Flight Centre buys quarter of Argentinian online group Bibam for $7 million

Flight Centre Travel Group is trying to flex its digital muscles once again – this time taking a 24% stake in Bibam, an Argentinian web travel brand.

Bibam is the holding company above consumer-facing services Biblos Travel and AvanTrip.

The $7 million investment is being billed as a “low-risk entry” into the Argentinian market and a “footprint for further growth across multiple travel sectors”.

The Bibam network operates both online and offline leisure services, as well as corporate and wholesale divisions.

As part of the deal, FCTG’s president of the America, Dean Smith will become a director on the board at Bibam.

Smith says one attraction for FCTG was Bibam’s technology, alongside its growth in the existing Biblos brand and the newer AvanTrip site.

Bibam is already a license holder for FCTG’s corporate travel management network in Argentina.

The investment follows a strategic commitment by FCTG to boost its digital capability in recent months.

The shift began in 2015 when it bought youth travel brand StudentUniverse for $28 million.

It acquired the business travel operations from eDreams Odigeo in five markets – Germany, Sweden, Finland, Norway and Denmark – last year and its Little Argas accelerator has made its first investment, taking a stake in artificial intelligence-led tech brand, Claire.

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