Let’s begin this story with the interim order of the Competition Commission of India, or CCI, because I think it is both urgent and damning.
About three years back, two hotel franchise companies, Treebo and FabHotels, approached the competition watchdog with the complaint that MakeMyTrip had abused its dominant position in the online travel aggregator business and urged CCI to intervene and deliver justice. Much hoopla and drama unfolded. CCI first commissioned a study and found that MMT was indeed a dominant player in the online travel aggregator business in India and then launched an investigation into the matter.
Treebo and FabHotels’ grouse actually dates back to 2018 when MMT entered into a clever but controversial contract with OYO. In exchange for listing OYO’s properties, the company said it would oust properties of Treebo and FabHotels—two of OYO’s largest competitors—from its platform. That way, both MMT and OYO could peacefully