UK-based Travel Intelligence, the luxury and boutique hotel website, has merged with its equivalent in the US, Perfect Escapes.
Described as a merger of equals, the deal technically sees Perfect Escapes acquire Travel Intelligence and a consultation has started in the UK over a small number of job losses in the UK.
Alan Josephs, Travel Intelligence chief executive, said the deal combines two firms that are strong in their respective markets.
He will move to San Francisco next month to oversee marketing operations for the combined group and Eric Jeck, chief executive of Perfect Escapes, will remain at the helm of the new firm.
One of the key developments already agreed as part of the merger will be Perfect Escapes’ websites migrating on to the Starfish platform Travel Intelligence currently uses.
Josephs said: “There are a lot of benefits from combining. They are rather US-centric and we are rather UK and Europe-centric. We have a little bit of overlap, but not much.
“We will be bigger and have much more scale and be more relevant to the hotels and advertisers we work with. Technically they are acquiring us, but from all practical stand points it’s an equal merger.”
Travel Intelligence employs 25 people in the UK and Josephs said the head count would go down.
The original venture capitalist backers and other private investors in both companies will retain an interest in the merged company, with the main investors being on the board.
The Travel Intelligence brand will remain, as will its other Chic Retreats brand, which was recently overhauled.
“There will not be a dramatic change in what we are offering but behind the scenes we will have significantly improved product and better technology for Perfect Escapes,” Josephs said.