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Expedia and TripAdvisor have subsidiaries in China, Priceline has gone the partnership route with Ctrip, and now Orbitz Worldwide wants to get in on the action in a more meaningful way through its HotelClub subsidiary. HotelClub will have to do some heavy lifting in China, which is a coupling, discounting and highly competitive market.
Orbitz Worldwide is looking for a few good geeks as it plans to fill 40 tech jobs to support international expansion, including in China, as well as enhancements to its mobile offerings and loyalty program.
“These will be gradual hires,” says Chris Chiames, an Orbitz Worldwide spokesperson. “We have previously stated our plans for China, for example, and in anticipation of that, announced a deal with AliPay (preferred form of payment for Chinese online consumers). There will be more resources for mobile and loyalty, as well.”
Orbitz Worldwide subsidiary HotelClub, based in Sydney, Australia, will be the launch brand in China.
HotelClub already has a China site in Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese, but the offering is expected to be bolstered before an official launch.
HotelClub also includes the RatesToGo brand under its umbrella. Together they offer hotels in more than 140 countries, 35 currencies and 17 languages.
Under-performing over the last few years, HotelClub brought in new leadership and in 2013 it saw higher booking volumes and an increase in revenue per room night.
Roger Liew, Orbitz Wordwide’s chief technology officer, says the launch of a tech recruitment drive follows “significant investments in our global technology platform over the course of 2013 …”
Orbitz Worldwide currently employs nearly 1,400 people, and more than half work in Chicago, where the company is headquartered.