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News Digital Media Invests in Bezurk

News Digital Media Invests in Bezurk

SYDNEY, Jan 15 /Medianet International-AsiaNet/ --

News Digital Media today announced its first offshore venture with the investment in Asia Pacific’s leading travel search engine, Bezurk.com.

Headquartered in Singapore, Bezurk.com is a quick and easy-to-use travel search engine that empowers consumers to search real-time price and availability information from more than 80 partner travel websites in one go.

One of the fastest growing online travel aggregators on the internet, Bezurk.com delivers travellers based in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand with unbiased comparisons for flights, hotels and tours. More products and countries are being added on a regular basis.

News Digital Media chief executive officer, Richard Freudenstein said, “This strategic investment is significant for us as we continue to identify new commercial opportunities locally and overseas.”

“The investment further enhances our online offering to consumers and advertisers, while also opening up new sources of revenue. Online travel is a key vertical in News Digital Media’s growth plans and is a natural fit for our business.”

“We expect the online travel industry throughout the Asia-Pacific region to move closer towards growth seen in the United States, as travellers hunt for the best deals on comparison shopping sites.”

“Bezurk.com makes it easy for the traveller by empowering them to compare travel information and choose the best possible deal.”

”We look forward to working with Bezurk.com to ensure it becomes the authority travel search engine throughout the Asia-Pacific region,” Mr Freudenstein said.

Bezurk.com’s revenue model is based on “Pay Per Click” and other performance based commercial agreements. News Digital Media’s investment in Bezurk.com comes as the Asia Pacific travel region is estimated to currently be worth more than US$25 billion and growing.

Chief executive officer of Bezurk.com, Martin Symes, today welcomed News Digital Media’s investment saying, “To have the backing of such a major player is recognition of our success to date and will accelerate our international expansion plans.”

“Our position in the Asia Pacific region will be further strengthened through the vast promotion, business development and integration opportunities available to us through News’ investment.”

News Digital Media will exclusively represent Bezurk.com for online display advertising within Australia. Bezurk.com will also be promoted across the News Digital Media network and News Limited newspapers.

Founded in 2005, Bezurk.com employees more than 20 staff and will continue to operate separately to News Digital Media. Director of corporate development, Sue Klose and business development director, Conrad Yiu, will sit on the Bezurk.com board.

Over the past 12 months, News Digital Media has made several key investments in companies that are natural extensions of existing assets, including the acquisition of paperless ticketing business, Moshtix and online compliance and management training business, Learning Seat.

News Digital Media also recently announced investments in shopping comparison website, Getprice in October 2007 and web-based recruitment solutions company, Recruitadvantage in November 2007.

* PhocusWright "Asia Pacific Online Travel Marketplace" Second Edition

Relevant information on the online travel industry for editors: A recent survey of more than 2,430 people conducted by News Digital Media in partnership with CoreData found:

* Nine out of ten respondents use the internet to search for travel information or prices when planning for their holiday.

* 72% of respondents would go online to research where to go next after coming home from a vacation.

* 85.8% of respondents have travelled for holiday or business within the past year

* More than 60% would be interested in seeing price comparison tools or maps/guides on a travel website

* Less than half of people surveyed go to travel agents for information.

About News Digital Media:

News Digital Media, News Limited’s digital business, is Australia’s fastest growing digital media publisher. Its operations include digital properties, NEWS.com.au, truelocal.com.au, CareerOne.com.au, CARSguide.com.au, moshtix, Learning Seat and related activities involving News Limited newspaper websites, including dailytelegraph.com.au, theaustralian.com.au, heraldsun.com.au, couriermail.com.au, perthnow.com.au, adelaidenow.com.au, themercury.com.au and magazine websites, including, vogue.com.au, taste.com.au and notebookmagazine.com. News Digital Media also has investments in shopping comparison website, Getprice and web-based recruitment solutions company Recruitadvantage. News Digital Media informs, entertains, empowers and connects millions of people through compelling and highly engaging digital media properties.

About Bezurk.com:

Bezurk.com is a comparison-shopping web site that helps travellers from the Asia-Pacific region search for flights hotels and other travel products across multiple travel websites. Bezurk searches airline and hotel chain websites directly and also hotel aggregator and online travel agency sites. Searching is done in real-time so that results show only the latest pricing and availability. Bezurk links travellers directly through to partner websites to book. Bezurk, headquartered in Singapore, was founded in 2005 by former executives from Intercontinental Hotels Group, Yahoo!, Priceline and ZUJI. Business 2.0 magazine recently named Bezurk as one of "31 of the world’s hottest international web startups". For more information, please visit www.bezurk.com .

SOURCE: News Interactive


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