Expedia, the world’s leading online travel company, announced a new organizational structure that aligns its worldwide brands and technology functions to best support more than 60 global points of sale in more than 40 countries.
During the past decade, Expedia Inc‘s international operations have transformed from nascent geographic footholds to become sizeable, high growth businesses supporting its global marketplace strategy.
Beginning today, the company is structuring its teams around worldwide operations for the Expedia.com, hotels.com, and Expedia Distribution divisions.
This change allows the businesses to align with worldwide brands and technology, rather than align based on geographic regions.
“Our objective is to build the world’s largest and most intelligent travel marketplace,” said Dara Khosrowshahi, Expedia, Inc’s chief executive and president.
“Improving our organizational structure will allow us to react more quickly to evolving global markets, more flexibly address traveler needs and better leverage the expertise of our leaders.”
Leading the company’s worldwide teams are:
* Eric Grosse – president, Expedia Worldwide. This group is responsible for Expedia.com in the U.S., all Expedia worldwide sites, and the Media Services Group. Grosse was previously president and co-founder of The Hotwire Group. Prior to founding Hotwire in 2000, Grosse was with Morgan Stanley and also worked in Internet research at DMG Technology Group, where he helped lead the Amazon.com IPO.
* David Roche – president, hotels.com Worldwide and Venere.com. This group is responsible for the global hotels.com points of sale, including the recent acquisition of Europe-based Venere.com. Roche joined Expedia in 2003 to lead the hotels.com and Expedia Distribution businesses in the Europe, Middle East & Africa regions. Prior to joining Expedia, Roche founded companies in both the marketing and technology spheres.
* Henrik Kjellberg – president, Expedia Distribution Worldwide. This team provides private label booking solutions for travel suppliers looking to enhance and extend their product offerings. Kjellberg has been with Expedia since 2001 and most recently led the Asia Pacific region. His other roles include leading the Europe, Middle East & Africa team for the Partner Services Group. Kjellberg has been on the board of directors for Expedia’s
majority- owned eLong, Inc. (NASDAQ: LONG) since 2005 and will continue to act as Chairman of eLong Board. Prior to joining Expedia, Kjellberg was with Spray, a leading Swedish Internet portal, and with Procter & Gamble.
In addition to these structural changes, the company announced the departure of Paul Brown and Dermot Halpin.
“Paul Brown has tirelessly served as the head of our Partner Services Group and provided great leadership for our Expedia North America business,” said Khosrowshahi. “He will be a great addition to the management team of Hilton Hotels Corporation, as president of Global Brands and Shared Services.”
Khosrowshahi continued: “As president of Expedia Europe, Dermot Halpin has built our EMEA business from $2 billion in gross bookings to more than $4.5 billion in gross bookings in 32 countries.
“Through Dermot’s leadership, we have created real scale in EMEA that has enabled us to realign our organization along global brands. After year-end, Dermot will assume new business interest and board positions in organisations outside Expedia, Inc.”
“We thank Paul and Dermot for their efforts and wish them continued success in their endeavors.”
Brown will continue in the Partner Services Group role for a brief transition period, after which the function will report directly to Khosrowshahi while Expedia conducts an internal and external search for a new leader.
Expedia Inc’s other businesses, Trip Advisor, Egencia, Hotwire, and Classic Vacations will not be affected by these changes.