Wow, big news breaking here and I truly didn’t see this coming – and what a link-up it will make. Priceline have agreed to acquire Kayak. Priceline.com Incorporated announced today that it has signed a definitive agreement for the Priceline Group to acquire Kayak in a stock and cash transaction. Under the terms of the agreement, the transaction values Kayak at $1.8 billion.
We hear that he Boards of Directors of Priceline and Kayak have unanimously approved the transaction, which is subject to customary closing conditions, including a vote of Kayak’s shareholders and regulatory approvals, and is expected to close by late 1st quarter 2013. Kayak’s current management team will continue to manage operations independently as part of the Priceline Group of companies.
For those who don’t know, Kayak is a leading travel research site that allows people to easily compare hundreds of travel sites at once (metasearch) dealing with airline flights and fares, hotels and car rental. The company processes over 100 million user queries each month through its global websites and best in class mobile applications.
“Kayak has built a strong brand in online travel research and their track record of profitable growth is demonstrative of their popularity with consumers and value to advertisers,” said Priceline Group President and Chief Executive Officer Jeffery H. Boyd. “Kayak also has world class technology and a tradition of innovation in building great user interfaces across multiple platforms and devices. We believe we can be helpful with KAYAK’s plans to build a global online travel brand.”
Steve Hafner, Co-Founder and Chief Executive of Kayak, and someone we’ve spoken about on this blog many times commented: “Paul English and I started KAYAK eight years ago to create the best place to plan and book travel. We’re excited to join the world’s premier online travel company. The Priceline Group’s global reach and expertise will accelerate our growth and help us further develop as a company.”
Priceline are a leader in global online hotel reservations, with over 270,000 participating hotels worldwide. The Group is composed of four primary brands: Booking.com, priceline.com, Agoda.com and Rentalcars.com operating in over 180 countries.