Online travel agent Zuji shuts down operations in Singapore, Hong Kong

Victoria Peak, Hong Kong. Photo by Florian Wehde on Unsplash

Zuji, an Asian online travel booking site, is no longer operational after failing to renew licenses in Hong Kong and Singapore and an air ticketing system terminated its services.

Zuji’s business permits expired Jan. 9 and the firm hasn’t applied for fresh ones, Hong Kong’s Travel Agents Registry said in an email, while Singapore Tourism Board said that Zuji’s license lapsed on Dec. 31. The International Air Transport Association, which represents about 290 carriers globally, terminated Zuji’s participation in its billing service for airline tickets earlier this month, the group said.

The online travel agency is one of the hundreds of travel booking websites that sprouted across Asia amid a travel boom fueled by the emergence of low-cost carriers and economic growth. While rising competition in the industry has presented fliers more options to buy air tickets and reserve hotel rooms, it has also meant cutthroat pricing and thinning margins. Uriel Aviation Holdings bought Zuji from Australia’s Webjet in 2016.

IATA said in an email that it suspended Zuji in November because it had “infringed on its payment obligations for airline ticket sales.” Zuji’s representatives didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comments.

Zuji’s websites for Hong Kong and Singapore showed error messages. A Jan. 11 Facebook post said the site is experiencing technical difficulties with processing refund.

Uriel owns the loyalty program Reward U for low-cost carriers of the U-FLY Alliance, which consists of Hong Kong Express, China’s Lucky Air, West Air, Urumqi Air and South Korea’s Eastar Jet.

Also read:

Asia Digest: Sale Stock to rebrand as Sorabel; travel startup Zuji shuts down

Bloomberg

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.