The massive Chinese online travel agent Ctrip has agreed to buy major Edinburgh-based travel price checking website Skyscanner in a deal worth AUD 2.35 billion – but Skyscanner will continue to be run separately.
The three Manchester University graduates who founded Skyscanner are set for a windfall of up to AUD 670 million each following the sale, the Guardian reported.
Skyscanner chief executive, Gareth Willams, 47, said the firm remained “very much a British company”. He added that none of its 500 Britain-based staff would lose their jobs.
The sale has fuelled anxiety about a steady series of takeovers of British firms by overseas companies, but Williams said Skyscanner was “very much still a UK company.
“Skyscanner was born in Edinburgh and we remain completely committed to our offices here.”
Skyscanner provides price comparison data on hotels, flight and car hire for 60 million customers.
Written by Peter Needham