Qantas takes majority stake in travel agency TripADeal

Skift grip

No one wants to miss a deal this summer, and that applies to mergers and acquisitions as well, it seems.

Matthew Parson

Qantas has taken a 51% stake in an Australian online travel agency TripADealpoised to take advantage of a surge in bookings as residents prepare for their first overseas vacation in more than two years.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the deal allows Qantas to acquire the remaining 49% over four years, at an agreed multiple of the agency’s bookings at the time. Qantas joins existing shareholders, the founders of TripADeal and private equity firm BGH Capital, who took a stake in 2020.

TripADeal currently employs around 100 people in Byron Bay and the Gold Coast, and has 30 of its own tour guides based in 30 countries.

loyalty game

The national airline will allow its frequent flyer points to be used on a range of packages, he said in a statement. Qantas Loyalty has 14 million members and holidays can be booked regardless of which airline is part of the package.

TripADeal experienced an annual growth rate of over 40% and in the 12 months before the pandemic, and bookings exceeded $141 million. Monthly bookings are now significantly higher and according to reports were on track to record nearly $14 million in revenue this month.

Qantas estimates the online package holiday market to be worth $9.2 billion.

Qantas Loyalty is targeting a return to double-digit growth in 2022 and targets underlying profit before interest and tax of $352-423 million by its 2024 financial year.

“Coming out of the pandemic, people want a special but also tried and true holiday experience, and there is a huge shift towards online booking,” said Alan Joyce, CEO of Qantas Group.

Willie R. Golden