E Stock Profile: Booking Holdings

Booking Holdings (BKNG) is the world leader in online travel and related services provided to customers and partners in over 220 countries through six primary brands - Booking.com, priceline.com, KAYAK, agoda.com, rentalcars.com, and OpenTable. Booking Holdings helps people experience the world by providing consumers, travel service providers, and restaurants with leading travel and restaurant reservation and related services.

brown wooden table and chairs

Photo by Brands&People on Unsplash

Strong Brands

Booking Holdings was launched in 1998 in the U.S. under the priceline.com brand. Since then, the operations have expanded to include other strong travel-related brands, including Booking.com, agoda.com, rentalcars.com, KAYAK and OpenTable.

Booking.com is available in 40 languages and is the most profitable and largest online accommodation reservation service in the world with more than 2.3 million properties in more than 220 countries, including 432,000 hotels, motels and resorts and 1.9 million homes, apartments and other unique places to stay. Agoda.com is a leading online accommodation reservation service catering primarily to consumers in the Asia-Pacific region.

Rentalcars.com is a multinational car hire service, offering its reservation services in over 54,000 locations, including more than 1,100 airports throughout the world.

Priceline.com offers leisure travelers, primarily in the U.S., multiple ways to save on airline tickets, hotel rooms, car rentals, vacation packages and cruises.

KAYAK, acquired in 2013, is a leading travel research site allowing people to easily compare hundreds of travel sites when searching for flights, hotels and rental cars. OpenTable, acquired in 2014, is a leading brand for booking online restaurant reservations. OpenTable primarily does business in the United States with plans to expand internationally.

Impact Of The Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic, as well as subsequent outbreaks driven by new variants of COVID-19, resulted in a significant decrease in consumer spending and an unprecedented decline in travel and restaurant activities due to government restrictions and economic conditions. This, obviously, had a material adverse impact on Booking’s financial results last year as seen in the table above. Substantial restructuring and impairment charges also negatively impacted results. This prompted us to cancel our reservation and sell our position in Booking last year given all the uncertainty around the pandemic and its impact on the travel business.

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