American Express Global Business Travel has agreed to acquire Egencia, the corporate travel arm of Expedia Group. The deal calls for Expedia Group to enter a long-term strategic commercial agreement with American Express GBT and to become an investor in the company. Financial terms of the agreement weren't disclosed.
If the deal is approved and closes, GBT will make Egencia part of its platform and continue to invest in the Egencia brand, its people and its technology. "Our strategy is to provide customers with unparalleled choice by having the best solutions for each managed-travel segment that we serve," said Paul Abbott, CEO of American Express GBT. "In Egencia, we would welcome the industry’s leading digital business travel platform."
Egencia would benefit from GBT's enterprise capabilities, content and multinational presence, Abbott added.
Expedia got into the business-travel segment in 2004 when it launched the Expedia Corporate Travel platform. Four years later Expedia rebranded the platform as Egencia, following the acquisition of a startup by that name. After continuing to grow Egencia organically and via other acquisitions, Expedia is now looking to streamline.
“We are thrilled by the potential transaction and what GBT and Egencia could achieve together, as Expedia Group seeks to simplify our business and be a leader in all of our endeavors," said president of Expedia Business Services Ariane Gorin. "The combination of GBT’s leading solutions with Egencia’s great technology and team would help create the world’s best business travel offerings for customers and suppliers."
The companies are also planning an expanded, long-term agreement, by which Expedia Partner Solutions would supply a significant amount of lodging content to GBT's Supply MarketPlace.
“Expedia Group strongly believes in the robust return of travel, including in the corporate space," added Gorin. "We’re excited about our potential ownership in GBT and our long-term arrangement to power Egencia and GBT, as we do for thousands of other travel companies."
The proposed acquisition is subject to consultation by Expedia Group and Egencia with their employee representatives, as well as regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.