From the monthly archives: "April 2015"
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    Accor on digital M&A trail

    Accor has acquired Fastbooking for an undisclosed fee, with the SaaS company continuing to operate independently. The operator said the deal would see it accelerate its digital strategy and “broaden the range of services that Accor can offer to its hotels”. Accor would not be drawn on the price paid for Fastbooking, but commented to [...]
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    Google ‘in the firing line’

    The European Commission has officially announced a Statement of Objections against Google on its comparison shopping service. The search engine said that it would fight the accusations, but is thought likely to lose, raising the question of what the future of search holds and which will be quickest to adapt to any changes; hotels or [...]
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    Travelzoo drops as costs rise

    Travelzoo reported a 9% fall in first quarter revenue on the year and said that it had increased spending on products and member acquisition. The company said that it would increase spending on marketing and expected the year-on-year falls in revenue “to persist”. Travelzoo said that it remained committed to its strategy of growing its [...]
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    China remains growth target

    China’s economic slowdown could mean growth for its online travel agents, according to Ctrip’s CEO James Liang. The comments came as the sector continued to focus hopes of future growth on the country, with shares in the country’s OTAs rallying and Hainin Airlines planing to raise USD3.8bn through a private offering. Liang told CNBC that [...]
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    Airbnb asks to pay tax

    Airbnb has written to the New York State Legislature protesting that it would like to collect taxes on behalf of Airbnb hosts and guests but that the law does not allow it to do so. The company has been working with a number of different jurisdictions in recent months to collect more tax as it [...]
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    Google’s mobile-friendly fire

    Google is about to make changes to its search algorithms which will mean better placement for sites deemed mobile-friendly. The past year has seen a rush to mobile from both the global hotel operators and the online travel agents. Beginning on 21 April, Google will expand its use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. The [...]
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    Apple Maps adds reviews

    Apple Maps is reported to have added reviews from TripAdvisor and booking.com, after three years of Yelp being its sole review partner. Improving the service has been a priority for the company’s CEO, and the latest move indicates that it is set on proving it did not make a mistake when it dropped Google Maps [...]
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    Operators’ ‘loyalty beyond reason’

    InterContinental Hotels Group, Starwood Hotels & Resorts and Wyndham Hotels Group have all announced enhancements to their loyalty programmes. The move is the latest salvo in the battle between the global hotel operators to create the most attractive programmes at a time when JD Power reports that guests’ priorities are earning and redeeming rewards. InterContinental [...]
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    Bravofly Rumbo goes Lastminute

    Bravofly Rumbo, which acquired Lastminute.com from Sabre for USD120m at the beginning of the year, is to change its name to Lastminute.com. The news came as the group announced its latest results, which saw 19.3% growth in revenues to EUR147.0m in 2014, driven by its meta-search business and recent acquisition. The group said it was [...]
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    Travel apps mostly forgotten

    Travel and holiday apps are the most-forgotten apps downloaded, according to a study by Google, which called for greater engagement. The study was released as the travel sector is continuing to invest heavily in developing apps, with hotel operators frequently linking them to their loyalty programmes. Google’s report found that, of those people who had [...]