SoftBank-backed Oyo buys shared office startup Innov8 for $30 million

FILE PHOTO: The logo of OYO, India's largest and fastest-growing hotel chain, installed on a hotel building is pictured in an alley in New Delhi, India, April 3, 2019. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

BENGALURU (Reuters) - Indian hotel startup Oyo said on Tuesday it has bought local co-working venture Innov8, as the SoftBank-backed hospitality chain looks to venture into the commercial real estate business under the brand name Oyo Workspaces.

Oyo will buy innovate for $30 million in an all-stock deal, a person with knowledge of the development said.

The person requested anonymity as the discussions surrounding the deal are private.

Oyo’s move comes as fellow SoftBank-backed shared office space manager WeWork, part of The We Company, is gearing up for an IPO. Oyo Workspaces will directly compete with WeWork in India.

The brand will open over 21 of its shared work spaces in more than 10 cities across the country and it plans to expand presence to over 50 centres by the end of 2019, Oyo said in an emailed statement, without disclosing the deal value.

Gurugram-headquartered Oyo said it would offer three options of co-working real estate in the upper-mid scale, mid scale and economy categories.

OYO, which raised $1 billion last year from investors, including SoftBank 9434.T and ride-hailing firm Grab, operates hotels in India, China, Britain, Dubai, Indonesia and Malaysia.

The company’s revenue jumped nearly three-fold in the last fiscal year, and it said it expects revenue to more than treble every year for the next five years, as it expands locally and in international markets.

New Delhi-based Innov8 offers upmarket shared workspaces, where a private office costs as high as 64,999 rupees ($947.24) a month, while a desk is sold for 9,999 rupees per month.

Reporting by Derek Francis in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi Aich