Expedia Inc (EXPE) Inks Agreement to Buy Wotif.com

Expedia Inc (NASDAQ:EXPE) signed an agreement to purchase Wotif.com Holdings Limited (ASX:WTF), an online travel company in Australia for A$703 million or A$3.30 per share.

According to the company, the acquisition price represent a premium of approximately 30% of the volume weighted average price of Wotif.com Holdings Limited (ASX:WTF) for the five trading day until July 4, 2014.

In a statement, Dara Khosrowshahi, president and CEO of Expedia, Inc. (NASDAQ:EXPE) said, Wotif.com Holdings Limited (ASX:WTF) is “well positioned in the Asia-Pacific region with a portfolio of leading travel brands.

“This acquisition will allow both companies to continue driving growth opportunities by leveraging the unique strengths each brings to the table.” added Khosrowshani.

The travel brands operated byWotif.com Holdings Limited (ASX:WTF)  included Wotif.com, lastminute.com.au, travel.com.au, Asia Web Direct, LateStays.com, GoDo.com.au and Arnold Travel Technology.

The Australian online travel company posted A$593 million in gross bookings (total transaction value) and A$76 million in revenue during the six-month period ended December 3, 2013. Wotif.com Holdings Limited (ASX:WTF)  also booked 3.2 million room nights during the period. The company is primarily focused on hotel and air with more than 29,000 bookable properties in destinations worldwide.

Commenting on the deal, Scott Blume, managing director and CEO of Wotif.com Holdings Limited (ASX:WTF) said, “Joining Expedia allows us to rapidly advance two of our strategic initiatives – strengthening offshore supply and improving our customer and supplier value propositions through enhanced technology.”

“We believe this will help solidify our position as the premier travel brand in Australia and New Zealand, grow our business across the Asia-Pacific region and increase our exposure and brand awareness to inbound international travelers,” added Blume.

The completion of the transaction requires the approval of the shareholders of Wotif.com Holdings Limited (ASX:WTF), and it still subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals.

The stock price of Expedia, Inc. (NASDAQ:EXPE) is trading around $81.22 per share, down by 1.2% at the time of this writing around 10:23 in the morning in New York.