eLong (LONG) Majority Stake Sold by Expedia

Shares of eLong Inc. (LONG) were trading up +7.60 or +36.8 percent to $28.25 in Friday's premarket after news that Expedia Inc. (EXPE) had sold its majority stake in the company to several Chinese buyers. eLong stock closed at $20.65 per share, up +1.31 or +6.8 percent in Thursday's regular trading session.



Beijing, China based eLong Inc. is a mainland China travel agency founded in 1999.
The company had its initial public offering in 2004 and is a leading online and mobile accommodation and reservation service in China. The company offers its clients a network of about 510,000 properties all over the world. eLong's technology allows travelers to book hotels, apartments and other accommodations, as well as airplane and train tickets on their tablets or mobile phones through its online applications and websites.

Bellevue, Washington based Expedia Inc. was the first Microsoft internet property is one of the world's largest travel companies. The company was launched by Microsoft in October of 1996 and subsequently spun off as an independent company in 2001. The company is an online travel agency offering customers bookings for airline tickets, car rentals, hotel reservations, cruises and vacation packages through its websites. Expedia has localized internet websites for 30 countries in Europe, North and South America, the Pacific Rim, Australia and New Zealand. Expedia's brand portfolio includes Expedia.com, Travelocity, Hotels.com, Hotwire and Egencia among others.

Earlier this morning, both Expedia and eLong announced the sale of Expedia's majority stake of 62.4 percent of eLong to several purchasers based in China. The buyers include Plateno Group, Keystone Lodging Holdings Limited, Ctrip.com International, Ltd (CTRP) and Luxuriant Holdings Limited. The total purchase price for the majority stake came to approximately $671 million.

Expedia informed eLong that all ordinary shares of eLong were sold at an average price of $14.63 USD, which would be the equivalent of an average price of $29.27 per American Depository Receipt of the company.

The largest purchaser was Ctrip.com International, Ltd. The company is a leading Chinese travel service offering bookings for transportation and accommodations, as well as packaged tours, and corporate travel management in China. The company has an advanced service and transaction platform allowing customers to book tickets and accommodations through their mobile phone, tablet, or personal computer.

Ctrip.com acquired a 37.6 percent stake in eLong from the Expedia transaction. The total price for the Ctrip.com portion of the deal was approximately $400 million. In addition, Expedia and Ctrip.com have agreed on cooperating to provide their respective customers with certain travel products for specific geographic markets.

eLong shareholders are expressing their optimism with the stock gaining sharply this morning, while Expedia stock was up a fraction after news of the deal was released. With yesterday's almost seven percent gain in eLong, the stock is up more than 40 percent over the last two days. The stock will open at a new all-time high in today's regular trading session.

Other News About LONG

eLong Reports First Quarter 2015 Unaudited Financial Results

Company reported first quarter earnings at the end of April.

Ctrip Acquires Strategic Stake in eLong

Ctrip stock is up over seven percent in this morning's premarket.

Other Stocks in the News

H-P to sell 51% of Chinese data-networking unit to Tsinghua Holdings

Tsighua Holdings is expected to pay $2.3 billion for majority control of H3C Technologies.

Nokia CEO says in no hurry to sell mapping unit HERE: magazine

Despite receiving some serious bids for the unit, CEO Rajiv Suri told a trade magazine that he is in no hurry to sell.

Published on May 22, 2015
By Jay Hawk
Jay Hawk
Jay Hawk enjoyed a 12-year professional financial markets career incorporating extensive first hand futures and options experience obtained by trading in the stock, commodity and forex markets on U.S. exchanges. Since retiring as a full-time financial market professional, he has been actively trading stock, commodities, forex and options for his own account and managing funds for others, as well as writing financial market commentary and educational articles.

Copyrighted 2016. Content published with author's permission.

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