Everyone at Expedia says Okerstrom will carry the company in the same direction it’s been going. But Expedia’s fleet of websites doesn’t have open waters ahead of it.
Priceline Group - owner of Booking.com, Priceline.com and Cheapflights - started outpacing Expedia in 2010, and by 2014 was bringing in almost $2.7 billion more in revenue.
Expedia has since managed to close some of that gap, but if it wants to compete overseas, where Priceline’s websites get most of their revenue, Okerstrom will be playing in his rival’s court.
There’s also competition from outside the hotel space - namely Airbnb, the home-sharing startup that has disrupted the hotel sector. Expedia is reaching into this market with its acquisition of HomeAway, which has an online marketplace similar to Airbnb’s, in 2015.
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