ibiboGroup, a joint venture between South Africa’s media power house Naspers and Chinese Internet company Tencent has acquired Pilani Soft Labs, which has redBus.in as its flagship platform.
Even though the company did not disclose the size of the acquisition, according to industry sources it is estimated to be slightly over $100 million (about Rs 600 crore).
Pilani Soft Labs was founded in 2006 by three BITS Pilani graduates Phanindra Sama, Charan Padmaraju and Sudhakar Pasupunuri. redBus.in, the company’s flagship product today has grown to become one of the largest bus ticketing platforms issuing over 12 million tickets per annum, and an employee base of around 600.
In 2011, Pilani Soft Labs had raised $6.5 million in a series C round of funding from Helion Venture Partners, SeedFund and Inventus Capital Partners.
According to ibiboGroup, the acquisition of redBus will help it to expand and diversify its existing travel assets such as Goibibo.com (a B2C Online travel aggregators) and TravelBoutiqueOnline (a B2B online travel platform for agents). The combined volumes of redBus.in and ibiboGroup’s existing travel assets will make the group one of the biggest online travel players in India.
“This acquisition catapults us to become a stronger online travel player in India,” said Ashish Kashyap, CEO of ibiboGroup. He said post the acquisition, redBus will continue to run it as an independent operation led by its founding members and the management team.
Apart from, redBus.in, the other products of Pilani Soft Labs including BOSS, a cloud-based ERP software for bus operators and SeatSeller, an inventory distribution platform for agents will also become part of ibiboGroup.
“We are excited to be a part of ibiboGroup. Naspers’ strong belief in internet industry and operating experience in multiple countries will help redBus grow into a renowned brand in the coming years,” said Phanindra Sama, co-founder & CEO of redBus.in.
Avendus Capital was advisor to both the company for this transaction.