Pan-European online travel company, Opodo, has acquired 100% of Travellink, the leading Nordic Internet travel agency, as well as 100% of Eviaggi, one of the major online players in the Italian travel market.

This move marks a key milestone in Opodo’s expansion strategy. Scandinavia is apparently the fourth largest European market for online travel with Euro 884million gross sales in 2004, whilst Italy is the fifth largest with Euro 627million gross sales in 2004. Opodo is already present in the top 3 markets (UK, Germany and France) and with Travellink and Eviaggi will now operate in the top five European online travel markets, which it says represents approximately 85% of on-line travel sales in Western Europe.

According to reports, Travellink, founded in 2001, has achieved excellent growth since its launch and is expected to see 85% growth in 2005. Opodo will benefit from Travellink’s strong local content in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland and from its established corporate travel business. Travellink in turn is expected to become stronger from the backing of one of Europe’s leading online travel companies.

In September 2004, Opodo took over the operational management of Eviaggi, the Italian online travel agency, and has now acquired the company.

“The online travel industry is forecast to grow dramatically in Europe over the next couple of years,” comments Simon Vincent, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Opodo. “The acquisition of Travellink and Eviaggi furthers our expansion into new markets, and strengthens our position in the Continental European Market and Nordic regions.”

Peter Carlsson, CEO of Travellink says that by becoming a part of the Opodo Group, Travellink will be able to strengthen its product offering, whilst continuing service to its corporate customers across Europe.

“The strength of Opodo, as one of Europe’s leading online travel companies, will ensure that we continue our strong growth and consolidate our leading position in the Nordic markets,” he adds.