Web Reservations International Ltd. (WRI), the leading provider of online bookings for the budget, independent and youth travel (BIYT) market, has announced that it has acquired Belgian based Hostels of Europe.
Hostels of Europe was founded in 1999 and was the original network for independent hostels in Europe. The organization provided marketing support and operated a website featuring 450 hostels throughout Europe. This acquisition reasserts the position of WRI as the largest international booking agent for hostel accommodation online.
Terms of the deal are not being disclosed.
WRI Marketing Director, Niamh Ni Mhir, said “The purchase of Hostels of Europe strengthens our position as the main distribution channel for hostel beds worldwide. Europe is our largest market for hostel bookings and is a dynamic growth sector. According to WRI “The Hostelseurope.com and Hostels.net websites will provide additional demand for the 15,000 new hostel beds due to come online in the European market in the coming months”
WRI will integrate its online reservations technology into the Hostelseurope.com and Hostels.net sites originally operated by Hostels of Europe. The company’s flagship website, www.hostelworld.com, currently operates in the same market.
This acquisition further consolidates WRI’s position as global leader in hostel reservations, a tourism and travel sector that is worth in excess of US$4.5 billion annually. The demographic profile of the BIYT sector consists of young, budget conscious frequent travellers who prefer to book online.
WRI’s strategy going forward is further dominance of this sector which the company will continue to pursue through organic growth and further appropriate acquisitions.