The acquisition price for the shares in lastminute.com and the redemption price payable in respect of lastminute.com's bonds equates to an equity value of approximately GBP 577M (approximately $1,020M) and an enterprise value of approximately GBP 584M (approximately $1,034M), including gross debt of approximately GBP 79M (approximately $138M) and estimated cash at bank in hand of approximately GBP 72M (approximately $125M).
"The addition of lastminute.com to the Sabre portfolio of travel companies significantly extends our role as a travel retailer," said Sam Gilliland, president and CEO, Sabre Holdings. "It increases our international points of sale and positions us as the leader in the fast growing European online arena."
"We're thrilled to have Brent Hoberman, and the entire lastminute.com team, become part of the Travelocity family," said Michelle Peluso, president and CEO of Travelocity. "I can't think of another company that shares such a deep rooted philosophy on both inspiring travel and creating a comprehensive travel experience. We expect this shared perspective, as well as our combined global capabilities, to help lastminute.com continue its success in Europe, and influence Travelocity worldwide."
Brent Hoberman, CEO of lastminute.com has agreed to head up the new larger organization, reporting to Michelle Peluso, president and CEO of Travelocity. Damon Tassone, previously president of Travelocity Europe, would report to Hoberman as Deputy CEO of the combined business, lastminute.com COO Ian McCaig would expand his role to become Group Managing Director for the company.
Hoberman commented, "This is a landmark day for lastminute.com. In just seven years the business has grown from a simple idea into one of Europe's leading independent online travel and leisure companies.
"This deal marks the beginning of a new chapter in which we look forward to becoming a leading player on the global stage. Being part of Travelocity and Sabre Holdings not only gives us global reach but enables us to offer a wider product-range to benefit our customers."
He added: "While the Travelocity Europe and lastminute.com brands offer a great cultural fit, there is also a natural synergy between the two businesses in terms of product and regional expertise, laying the foundations for a strong combined business which we intend to be a leader in online travel worldwide."
With the closing of the acquisition, lastminute.com will be the lead brand for Travelocity in most of Europe, and is expected to continue expanding. Travelocity will support multiple brands where it makes sense, with the intent of sharing underlying infrastructure, technology, and supply to drive cost savings. Some of the benefits the companies expect to achieve include offering the wide range of discounted hotels through Travelocity's net rate hotel program to lastminute.com customers, sharing best-in-class technology capabilities globally, and providing expanded European travel options for Travelocity customers over time. Additionally, Sabre Holdings' agency partners may gain additional European travel options that are a part of the lastminute.com portfolio.
Integration teams are evaluating all aspects of the businesses to determine how to structure organizations, where the companies can take advantage of each others' technology and content, and where there are cost savings. Within the coming weeks, joint teams will be laying out plans to quickly execute on revenue and cost savings opportunities. One of the near term revenue opportunities is sharing content. For example:
-- Travelocity now has more than 20,000 merchant hotel properties. As early as fall of this year, the companies expect to begin offering Travelocity's hotel program to lastminute.com customers, giving them many more options in the U.S. lastminute.com's access to rich European hotel content should add many more options to Travelocity's customers worldwide over time.
-- Travelocity plans to offer holiday and hotel options from lastminute.com to Travelocity.co.uk customers as early as this fall.
-- Sabre Travel Network also expects to offer its network of agency partners expanded European travel options as a result of the acquisition, for example, Holiday Autos car hire (car rental) products and lastminute.com holidays. This also represents a new opportunity for lastminute.com supplier partners.
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