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Alibaba announces strategic investment in Shiji Information technology

RBR Staff Writer Published 30 September 2014

Alibaba Group announced that Taobao Software, a subsidiary of Alibaba Group, has agreed to invest RMB2.81 billion in Beijing Shiji Information Technology, a China-based hotel information technology provider, in return for a 15% stake.

After completion of the transaction, Alibaba Group will have one board seat on the board of directors of Shiji Information. The investment is subject to customary closing conditions. As part of the strategic investment, Alibaba Group and Shiji Information will work together to connect the systems of Taobao Travel vertical with Shiji Information's systems, with the aim to continue to strengthen Alibaba Group's service capability in the online travel market.

Taobao Travel is a vertical within Taobao Marketplace that enables consumers to book air and train tickets, hotels, vacation packages, excursions, and travel visa services; consumers can also access the platform via a dedicated Taobao Travel mobile application. This investment is part of Alibaba Group's "live @ Alibaba" vision to diversify the company's products and services and become central to the everyday lives of consumers. It will also bolster Alibaba Group's online travel market service capabilities through the two companies' collaboration in data and systems.

Shiji Information is primarily engaged in the development and sale of hotel information management system software, system integration and technical service. Its products and services are used by both domestic and foreign high-end hotels in China. Currently almost 6,000 hotels use Shiji Information's service.

As part of this strategic investment, Taobao Travel and Shiji Information are expected to focus their collaboration on hotel information systems, including direct connection with hotel information systems, booking-related product development, integration with member services platforms and payment settlement through scannable technology.

Source: Company Press Release