The Spanish hotel company Sol Meliá and the British website lastminute.com have announced the beginning of a strategic alliance which aims to benefit from synergies between the two companies to optimise operating results in the multi-channel travel sites at lastminute.es -the Spanish subsidiary of lastminute.com- and Meliaviajes.com -100% owned by Sol Meliá-, While at the same time creating opportunities for the promotion and sales of Sol Meliá hotels over the Internet. The official presentation of the alliance will take place in the coming month of September.
Amongst other things, the alliance will see the integration of the Spanish site at lastminute.es into Meliaviajes.com (70%), with a minority stake remaining with the British parent company lastminute.com (30%).
The move will allow cost reductions at both companies thanks to joint use of a shared infrastructure, while it will also encourage the joint development of sales activities. Due to the fact that the profile of existing and potential customers of both lastminute.es and Meliaviajes.com are considered complementary, both brands will remain in operation along with their respective websites.
The alliance will also make Sol Meliá one of lastminute.com’s most important partners, allowing a prominent position for the Spanish company’s hotels throughout the lastminute.com network and a wide range of joint promotional and marketing activities that are expected to benefit both companies.
The signature of the agreement forms part of the “E-transformation” strategy begun by Sol Meliá at the end of 1998 to adapt its internal and external operations to the possibilities offered by new technologies. Sol Meliá currently provides more than 350 hotels in 30 countries on 4 continents and is the leading hotel company in Spain, de Latin America and the Caribbean, the second largest in Europe and the tenth largest hotel company in the world. The company also has the largest resort hotel business in the world.
According to the latest survey by Jupiter MMXI, lastminute.com has the most visited travel websites in the UK and France, and the only site to appear in the top ten most visited travel sites in the UK, France, Germany, Sweden, Italy and Spain.
As a result of the agreements signed with more than 9,000 suppliers world-wide, lastminute.com offers its customers “last minute” offers on airline tickets, hotel rooms, holidays, tickets for shows, restaurant bookings, gifts and auctions in the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Spain, Holland, Australia and South Africa. Lastminute.com currently has more than 3 million subscribers.
Meliaviajes.com is an independent multi-channel tour operator and travel agency, providing access to 53,000 hotels world-wide, 747 airlines and 48 car rental companies, with its own products and those of other tour operators. Meliaviajes.com is 100% owned by Sol Meliá.