Amex Business Travel Group to buy Expedia unit in bet on revival

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American Express Global Business Travel, a joint venture partially owned by the credit-card giant, is planning to acquire Egencia, Expedia’s corporate-travel arm.

Expedia will become a shareholder in and enter into a long-term commercial agreement with Amex Global Business Travel as part of the agreement, the two companies said in a statement Tuesday. Financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.

“Expedia Group strongly believes in the robust return of travel, including in the corporate space,” Ariane Gorin, president of Expedia Business Services, said in the statement. “We’re excited about our potential ownership in GBT and our long-term arrangement to power Egencia and GBT, as we do for thousands of other travel companies.”

After the pandemic kept customers at home and shuttered businesses across the country for much of the past year, there’s been a flurry of deals among payment companies in recent months as more firms bet on a revival in consumer spending. Global Payments said separately Tuesday it’s buying the real estate software company Zego from Vista Equity Partners in an all-cash transaction valued at $925 million, including a tax asset.

Expedia’s ownership stake in Amex Global Business Travel would come after the private equity giant Carlyle Group reneged on buying a 20% stake in the joint venture in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Earlier this year, lawsuits over the failed deal were settled.