US investors showed their strong confidence in the future of the online Chinese travel market, as Qunar shares doubled in its first day of trading on November 1, 2013. Hillhouse Capital invested in the Baidu-backed travel site earlier in the year, with a belief that the strength of its operational team and ties to the Chinese search giant would position it well for long-term growth. Hillhouse was also an early investor in Baidu.
The Chinese travel market has exploded in recent years as disposable income and ease of obtaining visas to international destinations has grown tremendously. By 2013, Chinese tourists had already become the world’s biggest spenders, underscoring long-term trends and demographics patterns.
Qunar allows consumers to easily search different sellers or hotels, plane tickets, tours and a host of other services.