Cendant Distribution Services Acquires Flairview Travel

2nd Apr 2004

Cendant Corporation today announced that its Travel Distribution Services
(TDS) division has acquired Sydney, Australia-based Flairview Travel, a
leading online hotel distributor that specializes in the distribution of
international hotel content throughout Europe and the Asia Pacific region
through its merchant hotel brand, http://www.hotelclub.com/ and its last
minute Web site, http://www.ratestogo.com/. Established in 1995, Flairview
Travel is one of the market- leading online accommodation providers in the
Asia Pacific region, with a rapidly increasing presence throughout Europe.
This acquisition enhances Cendant TDS’s growing global travel portfolio,
and accelerates the planned international expansion of its online travel
offerings. Terms of the cash acquisition were not disclosed, but are not
material to Cendant. The transaction is not expected to have a material
impact on future company earnings. Samuel L. Katz, Chairman and CEO of Cendant TDS, said, “The addition of
Flairview Travel is consistent with TDS’s previously announced growth
plans to pursue strategic acquisitions that complement and strengthen its
existing portfolio of travel-related businesses. The expansion also
accelerates the TDS business model’s strategic synthesis of “order
taking,” efficiently processing travel transactions, and “order making,”
profitably generating demand for travel worldwide.”

Gordon Wilson, Managing Director of International Markets for Cendant TDS
added: “The acquisition of Flairview Travel offers TDS immediate scale,
market share and profitability in the online arena outside of the United
States. Flairview Travel’s international hotel content provides us with a
substantial competitive advantage which we will leverage across our
various distribution channels to better serve our customers who rely on
our brands and online travel services.”

Flairview Travel specializes in the distribution of net rate hotel content
throughout Europe and the Asia Pacific region, generating annual gross
bookings that total in excess of US$150 million. In terms of content and
geographic scope, Flairview Travel is highly complementary to U.S.-based
Lodging.com, acquired by Cendant in August 2002. Flairview Travel’s
substantial international hotel inventory, which includes more than 5,300
hotel properties in 35 countries, the vast majority of which (93 percent)
are outside of North America, will be added to the existing inventory of
Lodging.com, which has relationships with nearly 12,000 hotels, nearly all
of which are located in North America.

Flairview Travel also has a comprehensive technological infrastructure
throughout Europe and Asia Pacific that supports the distribution and sale
of hotel content in multiple languages and currencies. Besides English,
web sites are available in Japanese, Chinese, French, Italian, German,
Spanish and Portuguese.

“Over the last 10 years, we have built an enormously successful business
of which we’re incredibly proud,” said Leon Kamenev, founder and chairman
of Flairview Travel. “The online travel industry is an incredibly exciting
one to be involved in and as we expand into Europe we are already seeing
huge opportunities. By becoming part of Cendant, we will be much better
placed to fulfill our ambitions as TDS is uniquely positioned to take full
advantage of the changing market dynamics. I am very excited by the
opportunities that this will create for Flairview Travel and for our team.”


The combined merchant hotel offerings of Lodging.com, HotelClub.com and
RatesToGo.com represent well over 17,000 net-rate properties worldwide.
This new online international distribution channel also provides TDS
lodging suppliers with a new global distribution channel.

“In addition to Lodging.com, we see great opportunities for combining
Flairview Travel’s strengths and capabilities with those of other TDS
brands, such as Galileo, CheapTickets.com and Neat dynamic packaging,”
Katz said. Three examples of ways in which the company plans to leverage
its brands as a result of the acquisition include:

* Making Flairview Travel’s hotel content available through Cheap Tickets,
Lodging.com and Travelers Advantage, which will enable TDS to provide
online travel consumers with access to a global net rate hotel inventory
of more than 17,000 properties. * Making Flairview Travel’s hotel content
available through Galileo, which will enable TDS to provide its 43,000
Galileo-powered travel agencies with access to an additional 5,300
specially negotiated net rates at hotel properties worldwide. *
Introducing the Neat Group’s dynamic packaging to Flairview Travel, which
will enable TDS to expand Flairview Travel’s ability to offer air travel
and rental cars, and allow its customers to choose from a vast collection
of discounted air, car and hotel offerings to create customized travel
packages. Substantially all of Flairview Travel’s current revenues are
generated through the distribution and sale of hotel content.

Headquartered in Sydney, Australia, Flairview Travel has 140 employees
with offices in Paris, Madrid, Bristol, Rome, Berlin, Berne, Moscow,
Baltimore and Hong Kong. The company has more than 5,000 affiliates and a
worldwide network of nearly 2,500 travel agents that rely on its platform.
Kamenev will continue to serve as CEO of the company, supported by his
current management team, bringing their years of expertise and experience
to the Cendant TDS family. HotelClub.com and RatesToGo.com will continue
to operate as independent brands within TDS.

This strategic ‘tuck-in’ acquisition is the latest in a series that
Cendant TDS has undertaken as part of its growth strategy to implement its
new business model—and includes the November 2003 acquisition of Travel
2/Travel 4, a leading leisure travel consolidator in the UK, and the May
2003 acquisition of the Neat Group, a leading developer of dynamic
travel-packaging technology.


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