Japan travel agency JTB buys Singapore's Dynasty Travel

Japan's top travel agency JTB has bought Singapore's Dynasty Travel, according to a report in Japanese business publication Nikkei Asian Review.

The transaction price was not disclosed, but the report, published on Tuesday, put it at "several billion yen". One billion yen is about 12.4 million Singapore dollars.

Nikkei said JTB was hoping to capitalise on surging tourist traffic from wealthy South-east Asians visiting Japan, and will work with Dynasty Travel to more than double the number of travel packages to Japan to 1,000 by the end of the year.

Dynasty Travel posted $94 million in revenue for fiscal 2013 and its customers spend 200,000 yen (S$1,952) on average, about twice the average sum South-east Asians spend to travel overseas, the report added.

JTB handled 810,000 foreign tourists last year and aims to serve 1.5 million by next year.

Japan's tourism industry is booming as the yen weakens, with incoming foreign tourists hitting more than 10 million for the first time last year.

The Japan National Tourism Organization said about 1.15 million people from six Southeast Asian nations - Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam and the Philippines - visited the country last year, up 48 per cent from the year before.