Chicago-based online travel agency Orbitz Worldwide has agreed to be sold to industry giant Expedia in a deal worth about $1.33 billion.
The all-cash deal is for $12 per share. Orbitz shares closed Wednesday at $9.62 on the New York Stock Exchange and surged on the announcement, jumping more than 20 percent.
According to Chicago Tribune.com
Reports surfaced early last month that Orbitz was seeking buyers for the company. Orbitz, created by major U.S. airlines and later owned by private equity companies, has been its own company since 2007. The company employs about 800 in Chicago.
Executives said the deal should provide about $75 million in synergies. They did not provide a closing date.
The deal needs shareholder approval and government regulatory approval.
“We are attracted to the Orbitz Worldwide business because of its strong brands and impressive team. This acquisition will allow us to deliver best-in-class experiences to an even wider set of travelers all over the world,” Dara Khosrowshahi, CEO of Expedia said in a statement. “From the flagship Orbitz.com brand, to other well-known consumer brands such as CheapTickets, ebookers and HotelClub and the business-to-business brands Orbitz Partner Network and Orbitz for Business, the Orbitz Worldwide team has built a devoted customer base and we look forward to welcoming them.”
Barney Harford, CEO of Orbitz and a former Expedia executive, said: “Our mission at Orbitz Worldwide has been to build our brands to be the world’s most rewarding places to plan and purchase travel. We’re excited for Orbitz Worldwide to join the Expedia family and for our teams to work together to further enhance the offerings we provide to our customers and partners.”