Ashwin Damera's business plan for a travel website for the Indian market took second place at a Harvard Business School competition, losing out to a plan for a lingerie company for plus-sized women in the US.

Mr Damera does not know what happened to the winning proposal but his, called Travelguru, went live in January and is poised to generate $75m in ticket receipts in its first year of operations, adding up to commission revenue of about $2m.

A boom in e-commerce, increasing credit card use and a surge in domestic travel have fuelled the growth of Mr Damera's business at a pace of 200 per cent a month, according to the internet entrepreneur.

Domestic tourism has expanded at a rate of 20-22 per cent a year for the past four years, up from earlier growth of 4 to 5 per cent.

"It's very encouraging that there is such high adoption [of online travel booking]," Mr Damera says, noting that 75 per cent of his site's users had already begun booking tickets directly from airline websites. "The fact that space itself is so young means so many people are ready to switch."

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