Expedia Inc., with Travelocity now formally in the fold and Trivago growing exponentially, saw its hotel room nights sold grow 28 percent year over year in the fourth quarter, although margins were tighter.
That represents an acceleration from the third quarter of 2014, when hotel room nights climbed 24 percent.
Travelocity and Wotif, acquired November 13, contributed about 5 percentage points to Expedia Inc.’s hotel room night growth.
Hotel revenue, however, increased only 15 percent, and didn’t keep pace with room night growth as foreign currency exchange rates blunted growth.
Expedia Inc.’s Trivago hotel metasearch unit was humming along, as well, in the fourth quarter, with Trivago’s year-over-year revenue jumping 68 percent “on continued global expansion,” Expedia stated.
Expedia is the first of the major U.S.-based online travel agencies to report fourth quarter earnings so it is premature to see if the company’s hotel room night growth bested the Priceline Group in the fourth quarter.
In the third quarter of 2014, the Priceline Group’s hotel room night growth edged Expedia’s 27 percent versus 24 percent, with Expedia making significant strides in recent quarters.
Expedia Inc.’s net income in the fourth quarter fell 30.3 percent to nearly $66 million on revenue of $1.3 billion, a 19 percent jump.
Expedia Inc.’s profitability was adversely impacted by a $27 million adjusted EBITDA loss at Expedia’s eLong unit in China.