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India watchdog probes SoftBank-backed Oyo

Hotel operators' group alleges cartel to dominate market

Oyo claims to be the world's second-largest hotel operator with a portfolio of more than 12 million rooms across 80 countries. (Photo by Akira Kodaka)

MUMBAI (NewsRise) -- India's competition watchdog is probing if online travel company MakeMyTrip and SoftBank Group-backed Oyo formed a cartel to dominate the market, signaling fresh trouble for the hotel aggregator already facing growing discontent among its partners.

The Federation of Hotel and Restaurant Associations of India (FHRA) alleges that U.S.-listed MakeMyTrip and Oyo, which allows users to book hotel rooms online, are restricting the market access of other operators such as Fab Hotels and Treebo by breaching competition rules, according to the Competition Commission of India. The regulator said FHRA alleges that MakeMyTrip and Oyo entered into confidential agreements, and MakeMyTrip has agreed to give preferential treatment to Oyo on its platform.

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