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Yatra seeks public market route for funding after scrapping Ebix merger deal
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Yatra Online, Inc., the Nasdaq-listed online travel services company, is looking to issue ordinary shares to raise funding, even as it deals with a sharp fall in revenue owing to Covid-19 and a scrapped merger agreement with software firm Ebix Inc.

The company is looking to offer interested parties ordinary shares, according to filings with the United States’ Securities and Exchange Commission.

In a statement issued separately, the company said it will offer 12.5 million ordinary shares at a public offering price of $0.80 per unit, taking the gross size of the potential offer to $10 million (approximately Rs 76.22 crore at current exchange rates).

This excludes sole book-running manager H.C. Wainwright & Co.’s 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 1.875 million shares of Yatra, which operates in India through the Gurugram-based Yatra Online Pvt. Ltd.

The company said it will use the proceeds from the share sale for “general corporate and business purposes”.

VCCircle has written to the company for further details on this offering and will update this report accordingly.

Yatra was founded in 2006 by former Ebookers Group (UK) executives Dhruv Shringi, Manish Amin and Sabina Chopra. It is India's second-largest online travel services company behind MakeMyTrip.

The development comes even as the company reported a fall in revenue from $135.3 million (Rs 935.86 crore) in 2019 to $97.8 million (Rs 737.33 crore) in 2020.

Further, Yatra said it expects revenue of $1.8-$2.2 million (Rs 13.43-Rs 16.41 crore) for the three months ended June 2020. This would represent a 92%-94% from the $32.6 million (Rs 225.08 crore) reported for the same period in the previous financial year.

In its filing with the SEC, the travel platform also reported cash, cash equivalents and term deposits of $38 million (Rs 286.67 crore).

Shares of the company on the Nasdaq ended trading on Thursday 0.52% down at $0.97 apiece.

Dispute with Ebix

The development also comes after the company earlier this month filed a lawsuit against Ebix Inc. in a US court over breaches of merger agreement a little less than a year after the software firm agreed to acquire the Indian online travel services company in a cash-and-stock deal.

“Ebix's conduct breached material terms of the agreements and frustrated Yatra's ability to close the transaction and obtain the benefit of Yatra's bargain for Yatra's stockholders,” the company said.

Following this, Ebix threatened to file a countersuit against the online travel agency, saying that it intended to enforce all its rights under the merger agreement and was considering all the options available to it.

As part of the proposed, Ebix had offered to acquire Yatra at an enterprise value of $336 million (around Rs 2,350 crore), and a net equity value of $239 million. Neither company has attributed the dispute to the fallout caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The move was expected to augment the Atlanta-based Ebix’s portfolio of Indian travel ventures. In October 2017, the company had acquired online-to-offline travel agency Via for $75 million.

Last year, Ebix unit EbixCash had acquired the Mumbai-based Mercury Travels and the Delhi-based Leisure Corp last year intending to create a travel division focused on luxury, events and sports-related travellers.

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