SEARCH to invest Rs 100 crore in India

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Sachin Tendulkar
Sachin Tendulkar, a travel portal backed by batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar, plans to invest Rs 100 crore in its India operations. The portal was launched on Wednesday. Tendulkar has a 7.5 per cent stake in the company.

“Sachin represents trust and simplicity, things that also stands for. He is also one of the most-travelled sportspersons, making him the perfect ambassador for any travel agency,” said Mehul Thakur of Viva Enterprises, which holds 46.25 per cent stake in the travel portal. Sachin Gadoya, co-founder of, holds the remaining shares of the company, which was started in 2007 by Gadoya, Albert Dias and Mohammed Al Thani.

The Rs 100-crore spend will be made over a five-year period. The UAE-based company aims to become one of the top five online travel agencies in the country, said Gadoya.

Executive Director Jagdish Asher would be steering the portal’s India operations. The India portal is currently managed by a 200-member team, which the company plans to scale up to 250 by mid-2014.

India’s online travel market is expected to cross Rs 55,000 crore by 2015, and online travel agencies are expected to account for a 40 per cent market share.

(This article was published on October 23, 2013)
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