Brazilian OTA ViajaNet.com is continuing to grow its business profitably, thanks to a number of product launches in 2016.
The OTA focuses exclusively on the Brazilian market, and expects to make a profit in 2016 on sales tipped to surpass half a billion reals ($148 million).
The business was founded in 2009, with current CEO Paulo Nascimento taking over in 2012 to turn its revenue growth into profit. He got the business into the black in 2015 by "optimizing its marketing, [making] smart investments in technology, and automating sales and back-office processes."
Its mobile strategy paid off in 2016 and will continue to grow into 2017. The Brazilian Association of Electronic Commerce says mcommerce now accounts for 20% of all online transactions in Brazil. ViajaNet's mobile channel currently drives 30 percent of sales and 50% of its site traffic.
Elsewhere, ViajaNet said that it is looking to grow its white-label business, expecting it to account for between 15-20% of sales in 2017. Its biggest partnership to date is with Brazilian shopping site Buscape but it is close to finalizing a deal to power the travel channel on Walmart's Brazilian website.
Dynamic packaging was introduced to the site during 2016, as well as a personalized data-driven fare predictor tool.
Another initiative during the year was international flights. Sales on ViajaNet have grown by 200% with the site claiming a 20% market share.
Nascimento noted that ViajaNet has managed to stay in the black during "one of the country’s most turbulent economic periods." Earlier this year Priceline Group wrote off its $60 million investment in Hotel Urbano, another Brazilian OTA.
Latin America's online market is likely to come into focus in 2017 with Argentina-based regional OTA Decolar widely tipped to be planning an IPO on Nasdaq.
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