SilverDoor consolidates serviced apartments top slot
Serviced apartments aggregator SilverDoor has bought its closest competitor Citybase for £2.25 million. A new parent company has been formed which now owns SilverDoor, aggregator of 160,000 apartments in 83 countries; UK-focused Citybase Apartments and the self-explanatory Central London Apartments, formerly part of Citybase.
Serviced apartments aggregator SilverDoor has bought its closest competitor Citybase for £2.25 million, uniting the two largest global players in the sector.
A new parent company has been formed which now owns SilverDoor, aggregator of 160,000 apartments in 83 countries; UK-focused Citybase Apartments and the self-explanatory Central London Apartments, formerly part of Citybase.
The brands will continue to operate independently and there is another part of the new business –Orbital Partnership, an “online corporate housing network which provides operators with a free, collaborative means of distribution”.
Set up by Citybase in July 2014, Orbital allows operators who join to share inventory, effectively giving each other access to everyone’s inventory. The new business is looking to “reinvigorate” this brand.
Serviced apartments for business travellers sit at the intersection of private home rentals and hotel chains which offer longer-stay options. Silverdoor distributes its aggregated inventory via TMCs and corporates and does sell direct to the consumer online, although it only started taking online bookings a month or so ago.
A spokesperson explained that the amount of inventory bookable online is limited by the operator’s technology, which in turn reflects the nature of the serviced apartment sector.
“The average stay is four to six weeks and technology generally can’t cope if there are a few nights booked during a client’s chosen dates. The tech brings the entire stay as unavailable. Agents can do this better manually by trying to re-accommodate the short-stay booking to free up the apartment for the long stay.”
Airbnb is the obvious reference point, although the jury remains out on its present and future corporate travel footprint.
Consolidation of any kind in any type of accommodation sector is relevant across the wider industry and SilverDoor’s admission that booking serviced apartments online is tricky will blip the radar of a lot of tech providers. There aren’t that many fragmented and scalable verticals left.
Read original article