NASDAQ-listed Priceline.com has announced it has reached an agreement to buy travel price comparison site KAYAK.
The deal values KAYAK at $1.8 billion or $40 per share according to a statement relased after the close of trading in New York.
Priceline, owner of Booking.com, will pay approximately $500 million in cash and $1.3 billion in equity and assumed stock options.
The statement said: “The boards of directors of the Priceline Group and KAYAK have unanimously approved the transaction, which is subject to customary closing conditions, including a vote of KAYAK’s shareholders and regulatory approvals, and is expected to close by late first quarter 2013.
“KAYAK’s current management team will continue to manage KAYAK’s operations independently as part of the Priceline Group of companies.”
Kayak processes over 100 million user queries each month through its global websites and mobile applications.
Priceline Group President and Chief Executive Officer Jeffery H Boyd said: “KAYAK has built a strong brand in online travel research and their track record of profitable growth is demonstrative of their popularity with consumers and value to advertisers.
“KAYAK also has world class technology and a tradition of innovation in building great user interfaces across multiple platforms and devices. We believe we can be helpful with KAYAK’s plans to build a global online travel brand.”
Steve Hafner, KAYAK chief executive and co-founder added: “Paul English and I started KAYAK eight years ago to create the best place to plan and book travel. We’re excited to join the world’s premier online travel company. The Priceline Group’s global reach and expertise will accelerate our growth and help us further develop as a company.”