The first time Expedia went public, it was a nascent online travel firm striking a separate path from its parent Microsoft. Six years and a...
The first time Expedia went public, it was a nascent online travel firm striking a separate path from its parent Microsoft.
Six years and a new owner later, Expedia will repeat its fate but with a different story in hand.
The Bellevue company is expected to spin off today from Barry Diller’s InterActiveCorp (IAC) and begin trading as an independent public company on the Nasdaq under the symbol EXPE. After the spinoff, IAC shareholders will own one share of Expedia and one share of IAC stock for every two shares of IAC they own.
While Expedia.com remains the company’s largest brand — it accounted for roughly 83 percent of second-quarter gross travel bookings — Expedia now runs a collection of travel companies that reach into all parts of the leisure and corporate travel markets.
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The company’s discount-travel site Hotwire, for instance, serves travelers that value price over convenience. Hotels.com has strong following by leisure travelers who take road trips.
Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi said the company will focus on ways to leverage its brands so that it can “be there when consumers are in the planning stages of travel.”
He cited the company’s TripAdvisor.com, which carries 2.3 million reviews from travelers on hotels and attractions, and Expedia, which recently announced it would waive cancellation fees for trips interrupted by a hurricane.
On the operations side, the company recently pulled all of its supplier relations under one roof to give it better negotiating power with vendors.
“It will allow us to differentiate our proposition,” he said. “We will be talking with not one brand but a great portfolio.”
Meanwhile, the company plans to focus on building its international sites in Europe and Asia.
Out of every $1 spent at Expedia’s travel companies during the quarter, 22 cents came from international sites — up from 16 cents a year ago.
Expedia last week said its second-quarter profit rose 51.3 percent to $73.4 million on sales of $555 million. It was the company’s first quarterly earnings as a stand-alone company.
Monica Soto Ouchi: 206-515-5632 or firstname.lastname@example.org