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Funding will accelerate growth

Five new partners invest £128m in search engine Skyscanner

Gareth Williams 3

Skyscanner, the global travel search engine, has  today announced five new partners who will invest £128 million ($192 million) in the Edinburgh based company.

The incoming investors will acquire an undisclosed share of one of Scotland’s two unicorn companies – those valued at $1 billion. This latest round values the firm at about $1.6bn (£1.1bn).

Scottish Equity Partners is among the existing investors who have sold a part of their holdings, although the number of shares sold was not disclosed.

The primary new investment in Skyscanner will support the company’s strategy and accelerate its rapid growth in the £332 billion ($500 billion) online travel market.

In addition, it expands Skyscanner’s access to additional sources of expertise and different virtual and geographic marketplaces around the world.

Artemis, Baillie Gifford, Khazanah, Vitruvian Partners and Yahoo! Japan now join Scottish Equity Partners and Silicon Valley based Sequoia as the company’s investment partners:

Artemis is a global fund manager which manages more than £22 billion ($33 billion) across a range of funds.

Baillie Gifford is an independent investment manager based in Edinburgh, investing globally on behalf of its clients.

Khazanah Nasional Berhad is the strategic investment fund of the Government of Malaysia and enjoys excellent access to markets across the Asia Pacific region.

Vitruvian Partners is a leading European investor with a track record of backing fast-growing businesses with deep expertise in online marketplaces.

Yahoo! Japan is already a venture partner in Skyscanner Japan. Its investment further strengthens this relationship.

The firm was valued at $1bn when Sequoia Capital, the venture capital firm, made a rare foray into Europe to take a stake in the company in October 2013.

Gareth Williams (pictured), Skyscanner chief executive, said:  “Skyscanner has enjoyed high double-digit growth rates for some years now, and has been profitable since 2009.

“This success is thanks to our 1,200 direct partner relationships, the trust of the 50 million travellers who use us every month, our technology and the dedication of our teams to deliver the best experience for travellers possible.

“This financing round and our recent new hires allow us to build fantastic further tools for travellers. I’d like to thank SEP and Sequoia for their belief in us and also welcome our new investors to the team. We have so much more to do together – it’s an exciting time.”

Skyscanner was advised throughout the investment process by Goldman Sachs International and Numis Securities, who acted jointly as financial advisers, brokers and bookrunners in connection with the investment.

About Skyscanner

  • Skyscanner is a leading global travel search company providing free search of flights, hotels and car hire around the world.
  • Founded in 2003 Skyscanner helps more than 50 million people each month to find their travel options.
  • Skyscanner is available in 30 languages.
  • Skyscanner’s free mobile apps have been downloaded more than 40 million times.
  • The privately-owned company employs more than 700 staff and has ten offices in Barcelona, Beijing, Budapest, Edinburgh, Glasgow, London, Miami, Shenzhen, Singapore and Sofia.

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