This excerpt taken from the CTRP 20-F filed Apr 29, 2008.
If we do not compete successfully against new and existing competitors, we may lose our market share, and our profitability may be adversely affected.
We compete primarily with other consolidators of hotel accommodations and flight reservation services based in China, such as eLong, Inc. and Mangocity.com. We also compete with traditional travel agencies.
In the future, we may also face competition from new players in the hotel consolidation market in China and abroad that may enter China in the future. We may face more competition from hotels and airlines as they enter the discount rate market directly or through alliances with other travel consolidators. In addition, as more international travelers visit China, international travelers may become an increasingly important customer base. Competitors that have strategic alliances with consolidators abroad may have more effective channels to direct on-line booking to their websites for travel needs in China. In addition, like all other consolidators, we do not have exclusive arrangements with our travel suppliers. The combination of these two factors means potential entrants to our industry face relatively low entry barriers.
Increased competition could reduce our operating margins and profitability and result in loss of market share. Some of our existing and potential competitors may have competitive advantages, such as significantly greater financial, marketing and strategic relationships and alliances or other resources or name recognition, and may be able to imitate and adopt our business model. We cannot assure you that we will be able to successfully compete against new or existing competitors. In the event we are not able to compete successfully, our business will be materially and adversely affected.