Microsoft Invests $5m In Hotel Company Oyo
Microsoft Corp has invested $5 million in SoftBank-backed Indian hotel company Oyo, according to a regulatory filing, ahead of the Indian hotel chain's plan to go public.
On July 16, Oravel Stays Pvt Ltd approved the issue of equity shares and convertible cumulative preference shares amounting to rupee equivalent of $5 million to Microsoft in a private placement, according to a filing by Oyo with the Registrar of Companies.
The hotel aggregator, in which Japanese conglomerate SoftBank owns a 46% stake, endured months of layoffs, cost cuts and losses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
But with easing travel curbs and increasing vaccinations, travel demand is slowly recovering in India, with local tourism attractions witnessing a higher traffic.
In early July, Oyo's founder and chief executive officer, Ritesh Agarwal, said that the firm would consider a potential public offering, but did not provide a timeline.
India is currently witnessing an IPO frenzy. In July, food-delivery firm Zomato saw a stellar debut. Berkshire Hathaway Inc-backed Paytm and ride-hailing firm Ola, which is also backed by SoftBank, are among other Indian startups looking to enter markets.
Last week, a financial news website reported that Oyo had shortlisted JP Morgan, Kotak Mahindra Capital, and Citi for a more than $1.2 billion initial share sale.
The hotel group did not respond to a request for comment on the report.