While one U.S. administration is getting ready to pack up things in the White House and Trump or Clinton hope to redecorate the place on their own, it could be an opportune time to sneak a Priceline-TripAdvisor or Google-TripAdvisor marriage past those sometimes-pesky antitrust regulators.
We don't know the terms of the transaction. Still, messaging, mobile and review analytics all make for a nice concoction and the two companies will likely be better for the mixture.
Buying TripAdvisor would be a very large -- albeit relatively cheap -- acquisition given its current stock price. One very significant impediment, especially for Priceline, is the fact that Liberty TripAdvisor Holdings, which has historic ties to Barry Diller's Expedia, controls TripAdvisor. Still, for the right price, Liberty would have to consider a sale of its prized asset as TripAdvisor goes through a very challenging and prolonged transition.
Barry Diller, the senior executive at both IAC and Expedia, doesn't need any more plaques on his mansions' walls but he is one of the people who had oversized influence in making online travel what it is today. He had a great eye for how e-commerce would emerge and he pulled the trigger on his great acquisitions.
Skift reported on March 29, 2016 that a Priceline Group acquisition of TripAdvisor, which is seeking to get traction for its Instant Booking product internationally, would make a lot of sense for numerous reasons. If it happens it sure would come at an awkward time for the Priceline Group, which is in the midst of a search for a permanent CEO.
Consolidation in the hospitality industry continues. It'll be interesting to see if Red Rock can revitalize the off-the-Strip property, especially as Vegas continues to evolve and grow, adding even more mega-resorts and attractions to the Strip itself .
Can these two companies--one with a somewhat questionable track record and the other, whose star has lost its luster--work together to relive their glory days? We'll see.
Marriott knows that in order to make money in the long run, you need to spend some. It also knows that constant communication with your current shareholders -- and your future shareholders -- is crucial when you're about to spend $12.4 billion to buy out one of your competitors.
TUI is making greater efforts to move out of the crowded online space and focus on its travel products.
Big turmoil in hospitality is continuing in 2016.