Oyo, the largest hotel chain of India, was a start-up by Ritesh Sharma, an 18-year-old college dropout. Ritesh Sharma started his journey with Oravel, which allowed people to check accommodations and hotels. This later got converted into Oyo rooms in 2013.
On being selected for Thiel fellowship, he had received a funding of $100,000. He used this amount to pursue his dream. Soon after, Oyo was introduced in Gurgaon.
In 2014, Oyo started receiving fundings from various sources. It also received funding of $25 million from Lightspeed India, Sequoia and others. Oyo launched its app in 2015. This app helps the users to book Oyo rooms online conveniently. Oyo had expanded its services to the cities of Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore and Goa. By that time, Oyo came up to 2000 hotels in 100 cities of the country and 20,000 rooms. In the following year, it celebrated 1 million check-ins. It has marked its footprints in the United Kingdom, UAE, Dubai, China, Singapore, Indonesia, Nepal, and Malaysia as well.
Oyo has reached a milestone of over 1 million rooms with more than 43,000 hotels worldwide. It functions in 800 cities of 80 countries. Oyo has the backing of strong investors like Greenoaks, Sequoia India, Lightspeed India, Hero Enterprise and China Lodging Group. It consists of 6 different brands- OYO Rooms, Townhouse, SilverKey, Collection O, Capital O and Palette Resorts. The net worth of the company in October 2019 was estimated to be $10 billion.
Oyo, standing for ‘On your Own’ rooms is witnessing a 3X growth in transactions in the country. The hotel chain provides affordable stays at good locations, clean rooms, breakfast, premium Wifi, sanitized washrooms, CCTV scrutiny, etc. It helps make trips budget-friendly. Ritesh Agarwal plans to make Oyo the largest hotel chain by 2023.
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