The pandemic hit the travel and tourism industry, but since last year, the global tourism sector has made a moderate comeback. It was during this time that India’s homegrown e-commerce titan Flipkart acquired Cleartrip to diversify its offerings, and now, it is selling Cleartrip’s business in the Middle East to Wego.

The 17-year-old Wego is a well-known online travel marketplace in the MENA (Middle-East and North African) region and provides award-winning travel search websites and top-ranked mobile apps. It is backed by high-profile investors such as Tiger Global and Crescent Point. It is known to leverage technology to automate and simplify the process of searching, comparing, and booking travel across airlines, hotel chains, and online travel agencies.

Ross Veitch, CEO and co-founder of Wego, believes the Middle East to be one of the most exciting growth stories in the coming decade, as the travel and technology sectors take center stage. This has prompted the company to sign a definitive agreement with Flipkart Group to acquire Cleartrip’s Middle East business.

This acquisition is set to increase Wego’s scale and capabilities and strengthen its ability to partner and collaborate across the region. Flipkart believes that Wego is the right partner to boost the next phase of growth of Cleartrip’s Middle East business and will provide continuity to it.

This transaction, which has the approval of the Boards of Directors of both Wego and Flipkart, also includes the sale of and a technology cooperation agreement between Wego and Flipkart.

The Saudi-based offers hotel, car rental, and cruise arrangements. It is expected that the transaction will close in the second half of the year, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals.

Flipkart needs no introduction, and as for Cleartrip, it had expanded organically into the Middle East region back in 2010. Headquartered in Dubai and Mumbai, it was founded in 2006 by Hrush Bhatt, Matthew Spacie, and Stuart Crighton. Today, its online travel aggregator helps in booking flights and train tickets, hotel reservations, and activities in India and the Middle East countries. Once the deal is set in stone, Cleartrip will operate only in India, since its Middle East business will go to Wego.