Ctrip, the China-based travel services provider, has purchased roughly 7.5 million shares of Home Inns & Hotels for $50 million.
Forbes reports that the private investment raises Ctrip.com’s stake in the hotel manager to 18.3%.
Which possibly raises a query of priorities.
If you are booking a trip around China can you trust Ctrip to get you the best deals or will the traveler be automatically directed to Home Inns?
In the West it would be unusual for a travel services providor to invest in the very services it is selling through the Internet.
China is a different case but, perhaps, the question can still be asked.