redBus Business Model: How Does redBus Make Money?


redBus is India’s leading online bus ticketing platform, headquartered in Bangalore and owned by Goibibo. It offers a convenient ticket booking facility through its website and mobile apps for iOS and Android. With a network of over 2,500 bus operators, redBus connects travelers with a wide range of bus options.

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The Journey of redBus

redBus emerged as India’s first organized bus ticket booking service and quickly gained popularity among Indians. In a country that ranks as the fifth-largest contributor to the world’s GDP, India aims to elevate its travel and tourism industry to a value of $250 billion by 2030 and $1 trillion by 2047. Companies like redBus have played a significant role in making travel convenient and safe, contributing to the growth of the industry.

redBus Operations

redBus has successfully served more than 18 million travelers worldwide. While its primary operations are in India, redBus has established a strong presence in several other countries, including Colombia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Peru, and Singapore. The company’s expansion beyond India has allowed it to cater to a broader international audience.

Key Services Offered by redBus

redBus offers a secure and user-friendly platform for booking bus tickets online. It provides customers with a wide range of choices, allowing them to select their destination and preferred seating options. In addition to its core bus ticketing service, redBus has expanded its offerings to include bus hire services, rPool for bikepool and carpool options, rYde, and redRail, its foray into the railway domain.

Target Audience:

redBus primarily targets customers who prefer the convenience of booking bus tickets online instead of visiting physical ticket counters. The platform offers various customer support services, discounts, and other perks that are not easily accessible at traditional bus counters.

Business Model:

redBus operates on a straightforward business model. It earns revenue by charging a commission on every bus ticket booked through its platform. This commission is also charged to the bus operators for each ticket sold. The commission rate typically ranges from 10% to 20%, based on the ticket value. Additionally, redBus generates revenue by offering hotel services alongside ticket bookings and by providing special discounts and offers to its customers.

Unique Aspects of redBus’ Business Model:

redBus stands out with its focus on providing quality services to customers. The company utilizes effective digital marketing strategies, tailoring promotions to customer preferences and demands. Unique features of redBus include real-time bus tracking, booking based on customer ratings, reserved seats for women, and a feedback system where customers can share their experiences and provide valuable input.

Revenue Generation:

redBus generates revenue by charging a commission to bus operators for each ticket booked through its platform. This commission, typically ranging from 10% to 20% of the ticket value, forms the primary source of income for redBus. In 2019, the company achieved annual revenue of $85 million, and as of 2020, it has a valuation of $710 million. With over 36 million users and partnerships with 3,500 bus operators, redBus has solidified its position as the largest online bus ticketing company.

The success of redBus showcases the immense potential of online ticket booking services, driven by a commitment to quality, customer-centric features, and strategic marketing initiatives.


Since its launch in 2006, redBus has experienced both successes and challenges. It has become a widely recognized and appreciated platform among the common people, offering a convenient solution to the problem of finding the right bus for any destination. With its simple yet robust business model, redBus has emerged as an inspiration for developing services that cater to the needs of everyday travelers.

redBus plays a crucial role in simplifying the travel experience, ensuring that travelers can easily find and book bus tickets anytime, day or night. Its commitment to meeting the travel requirements of its customers has made it a trusted name in the industry.

Through its subsidiaries, YourBus and Empresa Digital Peruana S.A.C, redBus has expanded its services and global reach, further establishing itself as a key player in the online bus ticketing domain.

As a commission-based platform, redBus charges a commission ranging from 10% to 20% on the value of each ticket, allowing the company to generate revenue while providing value to its bus operator partners.

redBus is now owned by Goibibo, a prominent player in the travel and accommodation industry. The visionary founders of redBus, Phanindra Sama, Charan Padmaraju, and Sudhakar Pasupunuri, have paved the way for a revolutionary service that has transformed the way people travel by bus.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

What is redBus?

redBus is an online bus ticket booking platform that was founded by Phanindra Sama, Charan Padmaraju, and Sudhakar Pasupunuri in 2006.

What are the subsidiaries of redBus?

redBus has two subsidiaries: YourBus and Empresa Digital Peruana S.A.C.

How much commission does redBus charge?

redBus charges a commission of 10% to 20% on the value of each ticket.

Which company owns redBus?

redBus is owned by Goibibo, a prominent player in the travel and accommodation industry.

Who are the founders of redBus?

redBus was founded by Phanindra Sama, Charan Padmaraju, and Sudhakar Pasupunuri in August 2006.

Did Ibibo Group acquire redBus?

Yes, redBus was acquired by Ibibo Group for $138 million.