Ritesh Agarwal launched Oyo on a simple premise: that the small, independently owned hotels, inns, and guesthouses that account for most of India’s hotel inventory could offer travelers better experiences if they had the right technology. In the five years since, he has knit together the country’s largest budget hospitality company by offering property owners a suite of tools that automate room availability, revenue management, customer relations, and marketing.
Today, the company has more than 75,000 rooms spread across India, Nepal, and Malaysia, and is bringing 10,000 rooms into its fold each month. It’s also one of India’s most powerful booking engines: 95% of Oyo reservations are made through the company’s own channels, eliminating online travel agency fees. The key to Oyo’s explosive growth: It helps property owners make over and rebrand their hotels in less than 14 days, while booting occupancy rates to roughly 75%, with 65% of customers repeat guests. “The neighborhood hotel can now fight the big boys because of the brand, technology, and distribution powers that Oyo brings to them,” Agarwal says.
He’s now expanding his offerings in other categories, including Oyo Townhouse (a fast-growing mid-market brand) and Oyo Home (managed apartments and houses).