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5 Online Travel Stocks With Upside

Stocks in this article: PCLN OWW EXPE TZOO MMYT

MakeMyTrip (MMYT) is an India-based online travel company providing customers access to major domestic full-service and low-cost airlines, hotels, Indian railways and major Indian bus operators. Of the 7 analysts covering the stock, 57% recommended buying, while the remaining advise holding. On an average, analysts estimate a 42.2% upside from current levels.

Notably, MakeMyTrip's initial public offering is the first Indian IPO in the U.S. since 2006 and the third since 1999. The company has a 48% share in India's $1 billion online travel market, while its international business, which is 50% on the online platform, contributes nearly 25% toward total revenue.

Looking ahead, the company expects to earn revenue minus service cost in the range of $58-$61 million. MakeMyTrip believes that it is well positioned for long-term growth, led by India's burgeoning middle class and the expected launch of the broadband spectrum in India, which will drive e-commerce and benefit online travel companies.

The company is seeking potential acquisition targets in hotel bookings, exhibitions and technology enablers. MakeMyTrip's chief executive said the company would focus on acquisitions that improve access to consumers, increase margins and growth. MMYT is looking to spend almost $2-$3 billion on technology upgrade in the upcoming year, aimed at customizing various consumer demands and attracting business.

The company estimates the size of the Indian travel market, which stood at $15.8 billion in 2009, to record $20 billion by 2011. Macroeconomic fundamentals like India's GDP forecast to grow at 8.5%, rising consumer spending on travel and entertainment, and a growing middle class will support MMYT's future growth.

Higher vendor bargaining power in the upcoming months will improve revenue margins in the hotel and tour packages business.

This commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet guest contributor program. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of TheStreet or its management.
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