Switzerland based Kuoni Travel, who acquired GTA for US$ 720 million from Travelport in March 2011, has closed GTA's consumer site Octopus Travel per last week. The company says it will still honor all hotel bookings made until March 31st, 2013.
According to Kuoni, the decision to close Octopus Travel is purely strategic and was made based on the continued challenging business climate in Europe.
In addition to Octopus Travel, Kunoi also decided to close several loss-making European tour operator activities in Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Belgium, and Russia.
As per last week, Octopus Travel is not accepting new hotel bookings anymore. Existing bookings until March 31st 2013 are still honored by Octopus Travel. Customers who hold reservations after April 1st, 2013 will be contacted until December 31st, 2012.
In its good days, Octopus Travel was a major hotel booking generator in Europe and Asia specialized in delivering hotel booking content to airline websites like EasyJet. But Octopus Travel was never the darling of hotel marketers, as it build its inventory on GTA's vast base of net-rate hotel contracts, and as such was constantly able to undermine the rate parity efforts of many hotels.
Related Link: Octopus.com