Expedia acquires vacation company assets

Expedia Inc., the No. 2 Internet travel agency, agreed to pay $82 million in cash, stock and debt for a unit of Classic Vacation Group Inc. to expand its custom-travel services.

The purchase price includes $5 million in cash and the retirement of about $47 million of debt using Expedia`s stock, the company said in a release distributed by PR Newswire. Expedia also will assume about $30 million in liabilities.

Expedia and other Internet travel companies have been broadening their offerings to rely less on airline-ticket commissions. Classic Custom Vacations sells vacation packages to Hawaii, Mexico, North America, Europe and the Caribbean through traditional travel agents. It was profitable last year on sales of about $300 million, Expedia said.

Classic Custom Vacations will be a division operating out of its current offices in San Jose, California, Expedia said.


The sale will be subject to an antitrust review and approval by Classic Vacation Group`s shareholders.

Bellevue, Washington-based Expedia shares rose $1.14 to $44.35 in early afternoon trading. Classic Vacation shares rose 5 cents to 25 cents a share when they last traded Tuesday.