Ctrip.com International, Ltd. (Nasdaq: CTRP), one of China’s largest integrated travel services companies (“Ctrip”), today signed an agreement with upscale global hoteliers Millennium Hotels and Resorts (MHR) to develop a global distribution strategy promoting MHR properties to Ctrip’s 300 million strong customer base.
The agreement was announced jointly at ITB Berlin by David Zhou, Chief Business Officer for Accommodation Business Unit of Ctrip and Nayan Peshkar, MHR Senior Vice President – Digital, Distribution & Revenue Strategy.
It marks the start of an alliance enabling Ctrip to offer MHR’s iconic portfolio of hotels in the USA, Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Australasia to its China-based business and leisure travel clients. Through the aegis of a strategic collaboration agreement, MHR will partner with Ctrip’s membership programme, which will certify its properties as “Chinese Friendly Hotels” and enable them to benefit from Ctrip’s influential ranking system. MHR and Ctrip will also work towards customer initiatives such as the launching of a flagship store on Ctrip’s digital platforms, joint marketing campaigns as well as knowledge sharing and cross exposure programmes for team members.
Ctrip is the number one platform for Chinese nationals travelling overseas. About one in four Chinese citizens use Ctrip to book and search for outbound flight tickets, making it the world’s largest outbound travel platform. According to Ctrip’s 2018 Travel Report, its customers’ top destinations are England, France, Germany, Thailand, Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea, Indonesia, and USA, all of which are home to hotels owned or operated by MHR and its associates.
MHR parent company Millennium & Copthorne Hotels Plc was listed on the London Stock Exchange in 1996. At the end of 2018, it operated or branded a portfolio of 139 properties with over 40,000 rooms. Its respected brands are present in 28 nations around the world, including China where it owns and operates the iconic Grand Millennium Hotel Beijing, as well as operating properties in Hong Kong, Xiamen and other major Chinese destinations. The Group has always had a strong Asian franchise, thanks to its majority ownership by City Developments Limited, one of Singapore’s leading corporations. This, combined with its unique range of iconic properties in popular destinations will make it a valuable addition to Ctrip’s customer offering.
Says David Zhou, Chief Business Officer for Accommodation Business Unit of Ctrip, “We are so grateful to be enhancing our relationship with MHR. Chinese outbound tourists reached nearly 150 million in 2018, and the growth for this year remains strong. By signing this China–focused distribution agreement with MHR, we are continuing to offer 300 million members the best hotel experience worldwide whilst enhancing MHR’s presence and boosting new business opportunities for them in the China Market.”
Says Nayan Peshkar, MHR Senior Vice President – Digital, Distribution & Revenue Strategy, “We are delighted to be joining forces with Ctrip and thus raising the profile of our hotel offering in the large and fast-growing China travel market. Asia is our second biggest region of operations, so we already have a deep and embedded experience of what it takes to meet the high demands of business and leisure travelers from China. With hotels located in some of the world’s most attractive destinations, we look forward to welcoming more of Ctrip’s customers in the coming year.”