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Bengaluru: Online travel aggregator ixigo has reinstated salaries of its employees, with effect from July, and is giving ‘deeply discounted’ ESOPs as means to cover up the loss in pay for the last three months, the company.

The management informed its employees on Wednesday. While not revealing the net worth of the ‘deeply discounted’ ESOPs, ixigo also said that it constitutes 2.3% equity shareholding of the company and can be vested after a year of grant.

Last week, Mint reported that hospitality unicorn Oyo offered employees deeply discounted ESOPs, making every employee, including ones it had furloughed, a shareholder in the company.

In March, ixigo, had cut salaries of all its employees in the range of 25% to 50%, which was expected to last for 6 months.

However, on the back of flight and train operations restarting towards the end of May, and seeing green shoots of recovery in June, the company decided to reinstate salaries of staff.

“We thought of taking a more collective approach, and didn’t want people to lose morale and motivation. What really gave us the confidence was improved unit economics, as compared to incumbents and revenue per employee ratio, which continues to be high,," said Aloke Bajpai, co-founder and CEO, ixigo.com.

At present, ixigo has close to 150 employees, half of which work in functions including technology, product engineering and development, and one-third handle operations.

The company also claims that it became profitable by the first quarter of 2020 (Jan - March), and earned almost half a million in profits, which gave the company added confidence and cushion about tiding the covid-19 crisis and reinstating salaries, Bajpai adds.

The online travel aggregator hasn’t laid off any staff, and doesn’t look to in the future as well.

“We evaluated several options, including layoffs; however given the extraordinary times we face and the hardships it will bring upon our employees, we decided against it," added Bajpai.

In FY’20, ixigo’s losses shrunk to 8 crores, from the previous fiscal year, where it reported losses of 40 crores (in FY’19), according to the company. Revenues for the travel aggregator also grew to 160 crores in FY’20.

In spite of the covid-19 pandemic having a severe impact on the travel industry, ixigo states that it has preserved more than half monthly active users and we gained market share, owing to offline travel agents not functioning, and automating processes relating to customer redressals.

The company also reduced its non-people cost by 20%, and shut down most marketing spends, Bajpai informs.

Last month, ixigo’s biggest investor MakeMyTrip decided to lay off 350 employees after being severely hit by the ongoing pandemic.

Last month, even payment solutions providerm Innoviti, said that it has enhanced its ESOP pool to $10 million,carried out during the recent fund raise from FMO and Bessemer, in a bid to cover up the loss in pay of employees.

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