An overview of our business
The history of Webjet Limited
The establishment of webjet.com.au – Webjet was established in 1998 as one of the first OTAs in the Australian market. Our focus has always been on offering our customers the greatest convenience and choice when booking travel. The #1 OTA in Australia and New Zealand since 2010, Webjet currently has 50% of the OTA flights market, more than 5% of the domestic flights market and around 4% of the international flights market.
Always striving to be at the forefront of innovation, Webjet has been leading the way in online travel tools and technology – from using the world’s first travel services aggregator technology, to developing an industry first domestic matrix presentation, Webjet was one of the first OTAs to migrate to the Cloud which has enabled us to deliver significant ongoing improvements in terms of product and technological upgrades. A market leader in online flight bookings, in recent years we have increased our presence in broader ancillary products such as holiday packages, hotels, car hire and travel insurance.
In 2013 we bought Zuji, a leading OTA in Hong Kong and Singapore with operations in Australia in order to expand our B2C offering into the Asian market. We later sold this business in 2016 to focus on higher margin B2B opportunities in Asia.
In 2016, we bought Online Republic, a market leader in the attractive online car hire, motorhomes and cruise segments. As well as targeting stand-alone market growth opportunities, Online Republic has helped expand Webjet OTA’s ancillary product offering.
Moving into B2B – Seeking to expand into new markets and seeing significant growth opportunities in the B2B space, we leveraged inhouse expertise and launched Lots of Hotels (LOH) in Dubai in early 2013 to service Middle East and African markets. This was followed in 2014 by the acquisition of Sunhotels, a European based B2B player with a strong presence in Mediterranean beach properties.
Keen to expand our global presence, LOH was launched into the Americas in 2015 starting in North America and soon extending into Canada and Latin America. In 2016, we launched FIT Ruums into the fast growing Asian market.
In 2016 we announced a strategic partnership with Thomas Cook to take responsibility for the majority of Thomas Cook’s complementary hotel business volume by mid-2019. As part of this agreement, we acquired 3,000 direct contracts from Thomas Cook, mainly European beach destination properties.
In 2016, we acquired JacTravel, a leading UK based B2B player with operations in Europe, the Americas, Middle East, Africa and Asia. This acquisition made WebBeds the #2 global B2B player and the #2 player in the important European market.
In 2018, we acquired Destinations of the World (DOTW), a leading B2B business headquartered in Dubai. DOTW meaningfully increased WebBeds’ scale, particularly in Asia and the Americas, and consolidated its position as the clear #2 global player.
Following the JacTravel acquisition, we had multiple brands operating in each market. Looking to ensure we are best placed to understand customer needs within each region, as well as tap into global growth opportunities, since January 2018 WebBeds has been structured around regions rather than brands. The 3 regions are Europe, Asia-Pacific and AMEA (Americas, Middle East and Africa). The various branded technology platforms (LOH, Sunhotels, JacTravel and DOTW) continue to operate across the regions, allowing us to cross leverage inventory offerings between platforms.
In 2019, we launched Umrah Holidays International, the first truly online B2B provider of religious travel services with an integrated visa application tool. This is aimed at the significant market opportunity flowing from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s vision to welcome 30 million religious visitors a year by 2030.
B2C Travel – Webjet and Online Republic
Our B2C travel business operates the leading OTA consumer brand of Webjet as well as various market leading brands in complementary travel products within the Online Republic business.
Established in 1998, Webjet is the leading online travel agency (OTA) in Australia and New Zealand, leading the way in online travel tools and technology. Webjet’s focus has always been to offer the greatest convenience and choice by enabling customers to compare, combine and book the best domestic and international travel flight deals, hotel accommodation, holiday package deals, travel insurance and car hire worldwide.
Since inception, Webjet has been at the forefront of online innovation – from the world’s first Travel Services Aggregator technology through to leading the industry in blockchain innovation.
Acquired in May 2016 to leverage Webjet’s core capabilities into attractive complementary travel segments, Online Republic is a market leading global e-commerce group based in New Zealand specialising in online bookings of rental cars, motorhomes and cruises. Airportrentals.com and Motorhome Republic are leading players in global online bookings for car hire and motorhomes and Cruisesalefinder is the leading Australasian online Cruise agency.
B2B Travel – WebBeds
WebBeds acts as an online intermediary between hotels (looking to fill hotel rooms) and travel provider clients (looking to find hotel rooms for their end-consumers).
WebBeds provides fast, easy access to global hotel room inventory to more than 20,000 clients comprising retail travel agents, corporate travel agents, wholesalers, tour operators and OTAs.
WebBeds offer rooms at more than 250,000 hotels around the world. The majority of our hotel partners are small, independent hotels and we provide an alternative distribution channel for their rooms.
Our trade brands include some of the leading B2B platforms worldwide including: JacTravel, Sunhotels, Lots of Hotels, Totalstay, Destinations of the World, FIT Ruums & Umrah Holidays International.
The B2B market
The B2B market is estimated to be more than US$50 billion in TTV and is an important part of the global travel market. In general, hotels use a combination of their own websites, direct-to-consumer (B2C) and intermediaries (B2B) to help sell hotel rooms. The B2B market provides hotels with longer lead time bookings and lower cancellation rates than direct to consumer bookings. While hotels pay commission to B2C players for hotel rooms sales, hotels provide nightly room allotments at negotiated net rates to B2B players. B2B also provides a wide range of global travel businesses with the aggregation, products, technology & services required to compete.
The B2B market is highly fragmented, with very few global players. WebBeds is the #2 global player and yet we have less than 4% market share. The majority of B2B participants having specialised local offerings and small market share. Ongoing industry consolidation represents significant opportunity for WebBeds to gain share.
The WebBeds offering
Our multi-supply aggregation strategy
- Greatest breadth and depth of hotel inventory – by using a combination of directly contracted and 3rd Party inventory, we provide clients a global offering through “one connection”. Our multi-supply aggregation strategy also allows us to draw on multiple sources to fulfil accommodation requests at times of peak demand.
- Low cost model – our entire offering was designed to disrupt by providing a global offering at a lower cost. Higher cost direct contracts are focused on key strategic destinations and 3rd Party providers broaden our offering without the need to increase contracting costs. We also have cost effective customer support centres and Rezchain (our industry leading blockchain solution) is helping drive efficiencies.
- Global scale – many clients use more than one B2B provider to access hotel rooms. As the #2 global player selling to over 200 destination countries through customers in more than 130 source markets worldwide, WebBeds is meaningful to both our clients and hotel partners. As the fastest growing player in the world, we are able to leverage our global scale across both source and destination markets to drive demand for rooms which in turn helps drive improved room allotments.
- Highly competitive prices – our multi-supply aggregation strategy means we are able to access room rates from multiple supply sources. We only display the lowest priced option meaning our clients only see the most competitive room rate.
- Market leading, user-friendly technology – our clients can access our global inventory through either XML or direct website connections. The vast majority of clients use high-speed XML connections which offer sub-second response processing times.
- Experienced management team – our WebBeds leadership team has significant industry experience building leading B2B businesses across key global markets. Our entrepreneurial and customer-centric culture is focused on providing the best outcome for both our hotel partners and our clients.
The WebBeds global offering
WebBeds provides a global offering across 3 regions – Europe, Asia Pacific and AMEA (Americas, Middle East & Africa). WebBeds is the # 2 global player, selling to over 200 destinations countries through clients in more than 130 sources markets worldwide.
Europe is one of the most important B2B markets given the significant number of independent hotels and in general, higher TTV margins that other regions. WebBeds is currently the #2 B2B player in Europe, operating in 30 markets.
Asia Pacific is the fastest growing B2B region in the world. WebBeds is now the #2 player in the region operating in 17 markets.
The Americas – WebBeds operates in 19 markets, including 17 in Latin America. The USA remains the largest destination for WedBeds customers.