Qunar.com CEO Gang Chen was reported to have recently indicated in an internal communication that the company did not rule out an independent initial public offering and further funding in the future, according to a Time News report on December 31.
Qunar.com was acquired by the Trip.com Group in 2015 after a decade-long tussle. Its financial figures have not been separately revealed in Trip.com Group’s financial statements.
Mr. Chen announced at the company’s 2019 annual meeting that its gross merchandise volume (GMV) hiked 30% in 2018, and flight bookings increased 20% year-on-year. Hotel bookings on Qunar.com grew rapidly again, at more than 30% for mid- and high-end hotels. The train ticket business grew by 40% while packaged tours achieved three-digit growth.
Qunar's APP has 28.88 million active users, second only to Ctrip, according to an Analysys guide on China's online travel booking market 2019 released in December.
Over the past year, Qunar has revamped its organizational structure, putting the strategic priorities on hotel and travel content. The company has upgraded the independent hotel business to tours and activities business unit and integrated the ticketing and things-to-do units. Qunar also set up a content business unit to create a traffic pool and attract more users as well as increase engagement through topical discussions, reviews, travel notes and routes content. (Translated by Elena)