The Indian hospitality chain OYO Hotels and Homes has partnered with SoftBank to begin its hotel operations in Japan.
OYO Hotels Japan G.K will be formed through a joint venture with Tokyo-based SoftBank Corp. and SoftBank Vision Fund. The new venture will be led by Prasun Choudhary, VP Operations and Head South and East region at OYO as the operating partner.
Ken Miyauchi, president and CEO of SoftBank Corp. said, “Combining OYO’s most advanced business model with SoftBank Corp.’s knowledge of the Japanese market, we will provide brand-new hotel experience to travelers in Japan. Moreover, OYO Hotels Japan offers various values for owners such as dynamic pricing and reservation systems, contributing to the elimination of labor shortages and flexible pricing.”
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OYO Hotels Japan aims to empower small and independent asset owners in Japan with its rapid transformation capabilities and integrated hotel/ryokan management system powered by advanced AI technology, that will help owners improve both their efficiency and profitability.
“With OYO Hotels Japan, we will be focused on creating unique hospitality experiences for both domestic and international travelers in Japan,” said Ritesh Agarwal, Group CEO and founder, OYO Hotels & Homes.
OYO has now expanded its operations to 10 countries— India, China, Malaysia, Nepal, UK, UAE, Indonesia, the Philippines, Japan and Saudi Arabia. Overall, the company claims to control over 13K hotels and 3,000 homes listed on its platform.
OYO has received commitments of $1Bn last year including $100 Mn from China’s Didi Chuxing. The company recorded a 3.5x jump in revenue from its India operations and a 4.3x Y-o-Y global sales growth for the year ended March 2018.
- Powerstation by OYO is a fully managed workspace for medium and large businesses, startups, and freelancers. The company has opened its first centre with a 500-seater space in Pioneer Square, Sector 62, Gurugram and aims to expand to Bengaluru, Mumbai and Hyderabad in 2019 itself.
- US-based multinational hospitality company Airbnb invested nearly $200 Mn in OYO as part of the Series E round. The two companies have also signed a strategic partnership and are looking to collaborate on multiple projects, one of them being Airbnb listing OYO’s properties on its platform.
- OYO has gone live with its ‘OYO LIFE’ services in Tokyo with more than 1,000 residential units on April 1. Under this new service, the company will offer fully-furnished apartments on rent to Japanese users.
The partnership of OYO and SoftBank in Japan raises concerns as one of SoftBank’s portfolio company, Indian ride-hailing unicorn Ola has been trying to keep it at a distance from regular operations. In the long run, keeping SoftBank away or in bed helps or fledges a company could be seen through these two Indian unicorns.