In bid to expand its travel and hospitality business, Paytm is looking to acquire Bengaluru-based Via.com.
According to a report in the Economic Times, Paytm has begun initial talks with the company, though the acquisition has not been finalized. Via.com could be sold to Paytm at around $80 million.
If the deal goes through, it will help Paytm take on the established travel and hospitality companies such as MakeMyTrip and Yatra.
Paytm, which raised $1.4 billion from SoftBank in May has been on an expansion spree across segments. In terms of its travel business, it crossed gross sales of $500 million in January, having seen two million ticket bookings that month. It was working with the target of $2 billion GMV from this business by March.
Founded in 2007, Via.com was earlier known as FlightRaja. As per the ET report, the company has 100,000 active travel partners across 2,600 cities, covering over 13,000 pin codes across Asia. The Sequoia Capital and IndoUS Venture Partners-backed startup has so far raised about $15 million in funding.
The online travel space in India has seen quite a bit of traction and investor interest. ET reports that industry reports state that the market is estimated to be worth $9.1 billion.
Paytm has been aggressively expanding its business over the past year. The Alibaba-backed startup is in talks for a potential investment in online grocery startup BigBasket through its ecommerce arm Paytm Mall.
In a bid to expand into deals, it is also reported to be in talks with deal platforms Nearbuy and Little. It also picked up a major stake in Insider.in to expand its presence in the events segment.