Owners of Popular Brno Flight Comparison Website Kiwi.com Sell Majority Stake
Kiwi.com is planning another phase of growth. American fund General Atlantic announced a strategic investment in Kiwi.com this morning. The Brno company was founded in 2012 as Skypicker; in 2017 and 2018 Forbes magazine ranked it the fastest growing startup in Europe. Photo: Freepik.
Brno, Jun 3 (BD) – The majority share was purchased from the company’s Czech investors by the global growth equity firm, American General Atlantic Fund. The founders Oliver Dlouhý and Jozef Képesi retained their shares in the company, according to the firm’s blog: “’Thrilled’ co-founders Oliver Dlouhý and Jozef Képesi will remain significant shareholders and continue to drive the company’s strategic growth plans in partnership with the firm. Terms of the deal have not been not disclosed.”
According to the Czech Commercial Register, Dlouhý currently has currently 24.5 percent and Képesi 13.4 percent.
In 2011, according to the Kiwi.com official website, while struggling to find cheap flights for a holiday, Oliver Dlouhý had “an idea that could change the world”. He teamed up with Jozef Képesi to develop their own flight search engine. Czech entrepreneur Jiří Hlavenka invested in the idea and in April, Skypicker was established. In 2017, the company’s turnover was over EUR 700 million.
General Atlantic has been investing heavily in the online travel industry. Their blog lists investments including Priceline, Airbnb, Meituan, Flixbus, Uber, Despegar, Smiles and Mafengwo.