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Ixigo acquires Rutogo; to launch intercity taxi marketplace


Travel search marketplace Ixigo has acquired Rutogo, an intercity cab aggregator for an undisclosed amount. The Rutogo team will be joining Ixigo and help in scaling Ixigo’s cabs app by building a marketplace for intercity taxi owners and vendors. Ixigo plans to launch intercity taxis in the coming weeks and open a cab marketplace. It will also partner with other intercity booking apps.

Launching intercity cabs was in Ixigo’s plans after it launched an Android app called ixigo Cabs, which aggregated cab info from places near the users, in April. At that time, the company had said that it had tied up with major taxi aggregator apps and curated a list of reliable taxi operators in major towns, with plans to expand to intercity rides.

Gurgaon based Rutogo, which operates in Delhi NCR and Chandigarh, claims to have had 100 taxi vendors on its platform in India, since September last year, when it was founded by Aneesh Rayancha and Venus Dhuria. The company went live in May this year.

IndianBackpacker acquisition
Earlier this month, Ixigo acquired all the intellectual property of Desi Backpacking Travelers, the company that runs IndianBackpacker, for an undisclosed amount. As a part of the deal, Akshay Chhugani, founder and CEO of Indian Backpacker, joined Ixigo as head of its Traveller Communities. Ixigo added a ‘booking’ section to the IndianBackpacker website. Clicking on this essentially redirects a user to Ixigo’s flight booking section.

Micromax’s investment in Ixigo
Ixigo searches, aggregates and compares travel content of flights, hotels, trains, buses and packages from other online aggregators such as Ola, Easycabs and Uber. In June, after Indian handset manufacturer Micromax made an undisclosed investment in Ixigo, the two companies said that they would work towards building on-demand and one-click travel experiences that would be integrated into Micromax devices. The investment would apparently help Ixigo scale its user base of 6.5 million monthly active users (MAUs) to over 30 million MAUs by the end of 2016.

Ixigo’s bus booking app
Ixigo was founded by Rajnish Kumar and Aloke Bajpai in 2007. It claims to help users aggregate train, bus, flight, cabs and hotel services from over 25,000 online and offline travel businesses. In September 2013, Ixigo had launched a mobile app on Android to book bus tickets from AC, Volvo and sleeper buses by searching for the original location and destination, number of seats and date of travel.

MakeMyTrip & SAIF Partners had acquired 76.6% stake in Ixigo in 2011
In August 2011, VC Fund SAIF Partners and NASDAQ listed Online Travel Agent (OTA) MakeMyTrip had acquired a majority stake of 76.6% in Ixigo for a total cash consideration of $18.5 million. Following this transaction, SAIF had owned 56.7% of the company while MakeMyTrip owned 19.9%.
Update: Ixigo CEO Aloke Bajpai informs us that MakeMyTrip’s stake in Ixigo is now only around 15%. 

Image Credit: Flickr user Kate Ter Haar

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