Ctrip.com's International Expansion Strategies

Ctrip.com's International Expansion Strategies
Case Code: BSTR542
Case Length: 11 Pages
Period: 1999-2017
Pub Date: 2018
Teaching Note: Available
Price: Rs.300
Organization: Ctrip.com International Limited (Ctrip)
Industry: Online Travel Agency (OTA)
Countries: China
Themes: Corporate Strategy, Growth Strategy, M&A, E-Business Strategy
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Abstract Case Intro 1 Case Intro 2 Excerpts


This case discusses the ambitious expansion plans of China’s largest online travel agent (OTA), Ctrip.com International Limited (Ctrip). In November 2017, Ctrip announced the acquisition of the US-based travel recommendation service, Trip.com (Trip). Earlier in 2016, Ctrip bought Skyscanner, a Scotland-based flight Search Company, for about $1.74 billion, sending shock waves across the travel industry. Ctrip’s acquisition of Skyscanner Ltd. intensified both domestic and international competition. That made competitors like Priceline Group, Expedia, and many more come up with counter strategies.

Since its inception, Ctrip had performed brilliantly as an OTA. Having started as a trip advisor service provider, Ctrip offered a broad range of services. Ctrip’s growth was propelled by the travel boom in China, and it grew by leaps and bounds. It went public and thereafter continued to add more services and expanded overseas. The case describes how Ctrip had been in the forefront in acquiring new technologies. To serve its customers better, the company employed Artificial Intelligence, big data, and intelligent hardware.

The case provides details of the noteworthy acquisitions and strategic investments made by the company and the perceived synergies. The move to acquire of Trip.com further signaled Ctrip eyeing on emerging markets like Asia. The case ends with questions like whether Ctrip’s existing strategies and strengths would be enough to help it emerge as a leader in the OTA industry and what challenges it might encounter from other bigger players in the market.


The case is structured to achieve the following teaching objectives:

  • Gain insights into the online travel industry
  • Understand the nature of competition in the OTA industry
  • Evaluate Ctrip’s competitive expansion strategies



Ctrip.com International Limited (Ctrip), Growth, Technology, Strategic Investments and Acquisitions, Challenges and Opportunities, Globalization, Acquisitions by emerging market companies, Chinese multinationals, International business, Global strategy, Acquisition

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