Interview with Tripmela CEO – Jared Blank – Post Shutdown Announcement

This is an exclusive interview with Jared Blank,CEO which recently went on sale on Ebay. Business India 2.0 was the first to cover the same.

Q1. What has changed since the time you started out till recent time. Is it the effect of financial meltdown affecting all industries in terms of advertising budget cut or you were not able to raise cash to further product development to sustain and get bigger audience scale?

Pretty much everything has changed since we launched.  The OTA market attracted new companies quickly – too quickly – which lead to overspending and then, all of a sudden, to a cutback in spending.  Other industries cutback as well, especially in online display advertising.  Advertising slowed down, and we were unable to raise additional funds.  We should have focused more on developing unique content, which would have helped with SEO.  That would’ve driven traffic, which would’ve helped with the CPC and CPA advertising programs on our site.

Q2.Is the site(digital assets) in its current pristine stage available up for sale or is their any existing liabilities or commitments which come with it?

There are no existing liabilities or commitments.  We believe that with a bit of financial backing, a company can grow Tripmela to be a large, profitable business.  Unfortunately, we just didn’t have the resources to invest.  As Travelzoo’s success has shown, the business model works.

Q3. Why choose ebay as medium to sell such an asset.Wouldnt approaching existing players in Indian market like zoomtra or ixigo would have fetched higher price?

We felt that selling it on eBay would be a great way to market the sale of the business.  We are talking with interested companies, certainly.  But we have been able to let more people know about the sale through eBay than if we had sold it in the more typical fashion.

Q4. Is there any reserve price in the bid or you will let it go based on the market dynamics or valuation of property?

We haven’t set a reserve price.  We feel that it will attract an offer that reflects its value in the marketplace.

Q5. What are the plans for the founders once the selling process is over?

I don’t have plans set yet.  I’d be very interested in helping transition to the new owners and working with them to grow the email list, if they’re interested.  I think Tripmela’s biggest strength was the ability to grow the list at a reasonable cost.  I have an idea for a new business, but in the current marketplace, investors seem to be taking a wait-and-see approach for now.

I think so this also stands true for lot of other players in market as well. Players like zoomtra, ixigo etc seems to be well funded and have adapted to changes in indian travel industry  which works different from the US industry where number of travel suppliers requires selection products like travel meta search engine or deal aggregators like travelzoo.

Update: (Private commentry with Aloke has been removed)

3 Responses to “Interview with Tripmela CEO – Jared Blank – Post Shutdown Announcement”

  1. 1 Mumbai Tour Guide January 16, 2009 at 3:09 pm

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  3. 3 Tanuj Ahuja June 27, 2013 at 12:26 pm

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December 2008

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