Raises Funds for European, Canadian Expansion

Internet travel agency
has raised an additional FRF115 million ($17 million)
for expansion into Spain, Italy, Belgium and Canada.

The investment comes from’s original
backers, Apax Partners & Cie, Partech International
and BDPME, along with GE Equity, Fiat subsidiary Exor and
Spanish bank BBV/A.

With the additional funds, also hopes to
consolidate its position in France, where it was awarded
the national “e-tourisme” prize in December 1999. After
creating around 80 jobs and achieving daily earnings of
nearly a million francs, the online travel company has
set its sights on spanning Europe and other markets.

Later in 2000, expects to open sites
in the U.K., Germany and Denmark, as well as the new
subsidiaries announced this week.

Roland Coutas, chairman and chief executive officer of, said the company is experiencing exponential
growth in France and wanted to become the leading international
player in the online travel business.

“Our aim is to facilitate the entire travel process for
cybersurfers by offering every conceivable type of travel
and tourism, and practical services,” said Coutas.

In each European country, Travelprice is putting together
local teams of tourism and IT professionals to create each
version of its service. It has appointed Ugo Tartufari to
head the Italian business and Ricardo Gonzalez Vidal to
manage the business in Spain.

“Combining the skills of Internet and tourism professionals
will allow us to establish a strong local presence for worldwide,” said Pascal Bordat, managing director

Among the services available on is the
facility to check out every flight offered by over 600 airlines.
It also offers a selection of 20,000 hotels and 1,000 special

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