January 30, 2023

Photo Credit: Shot of a businessman sitting in an airport making an online reservation with his credit card
While many believe the best days of online travel are far behind, Expedia Group CEO Peter Kern feels otherwise. Kern sees plenty of potential and room for growth within the online travel business.
At the Skift Global Forum in Manhattan last week Kern responded to Skift CEO Rafat Ali on whether online travel has reached its cap. Kern’s responded by stating that although North America has matured in online travel, there are many parts of the world that still need to adapt from offline to online booking.
Kern also stated that the window to make “easy money” has diminished, however online products and services still have room to improve. Also, as a generational shift approaches there’s still opportunities for innovation.
Kern also added that the major online travel companies only have control of 20% of a “multi-trillion dollar” travel market. The numbers reflect endless possibilities for companies to build relationships with offline travel consultants.
“I think there is plenty of growth for all of us,” Kern said.
Ali then proceeded to ask Kern if other companies would follow suit and merge or get acquired. As of 2021 Expedia sold their corporate travel business to American Express Global.
Kern responded that acquiring companies isn’t a priority for Expedia Group, However, once the company completes their current restructuring, it will consider taking on more deals as the company expands.
Currently Expedia Group is developing business to business services their partners can use, including fraud detection, service capabilities, and machines that learn systems as they go. Kern added that the transition has been a big money earner for Expedia since pre-pandemic
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