Google acquisition of ITA Software approved; Expedia shares up nearly 13%


US Department of Justice cleared Google’s USD700 million acquisition of ITA Software, subject to certain concessions and conditions, which Google has reportedly agreed to. ITA provides software to several travel search providers, including Expedia, Kayak and Travelocity.

The proposed legal settlement requires Google to develop and license ITA's travel software to other companies. Under the agreement, ITA customers will have their contracts extended to 2016 and new customers will be permitted to license ITA's QPX software on "fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms" to 2016. Google also must offer ITA's next generation InstaSearch product to the sites. The agreement still requires approval of a US District Court.

ITA Software welcomed the decision to clear Google’s acquisition of ITA. Work to close the acquisition will begin immediately.

Expedia shares traded 12.9% higher on Friday, and gained a further 0.4% in after hours trading. The increase pushed Expedia shares to a two-month high, although the stock has gained just 2 for the year-to-date. Last week Expedia announced that it was splitting its travel-media brands under the TripAdvisor banner.

Selected aviation suppliers share price movements (% change): 08-Apr-2011

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