Also: Priceline buying Kayak for $1.8 billion; how Gangham Style went viral.
I think this a great deal, and Priceline is probably among the best acquirers in Internet history, I would even say as good as Cisco of yore. Booking.com turned out to be among the best acquisitions ever, so did its buyout of Agoda.com, and now Kayak, which they will keep separate, could be in a similar vein.
Kayak has gone through many deathwatches before: first was when Google bought ITA software and everyone thought that'd be the end of Kayak's metasearch life as Google would throttle it. Nothing like that happened, as Google's own travel metasearch efforts have been minuscule and ITA Software is stil being licensed to competitors including Kayak, Bing and others. Then it was with its IPO, which almost never took off, but then did and since its IPO debut on July 20th, the stock has actually done well, all macro issues considered.
More importantly, AT&T's sudden reversal exposes an enormous hole in the way that the FCC stewards the nation's airwaves. I mentioned in my January editorial — Unlimited data is dead, so let's fight a smarter fight — that spectrum belongs to the citizens; it's merely licensed to companies like AT&T, Verizon, and hundreds of others for the purpose of creating networks and services that are beneficial to the people living in it. That means that when a company purchases a license and doesn't use it to the fullest extent possible — when it arbitrarily restricts services, for instance — it's a violation of the spirit by which the spectrum was licensed in the first place. But in the course of normal business, the FCC doesn't regularly audit the utilization of this spectrum. We need to take private industry's word for it that it's using spectrum as efficiently as it can, that it's running out of spectrum, and that it's disabling access to services for a good reason.
Gilt Groupe starts search for new CEO [THE WALL STREET JOURNAL]
The search comes as Mr. Ryan's aggressive plan to expand the five-year-old Internet darling into new business lines has stumbled. The members-only site grew quickly in the wake of the recession by selling women's luxury gear at a discount, and that strong buzz helped it land a valuation of $1 billion when it raised money last year. But Gilt had less success branching into full-priced menswear, local services and food.
How did Gangham Style go viral? [SOCIAL MEDIA TODAY]
Having an audience is a good start but you need them all to share it and watch it, again and again. YG Entertainment did their research when it came to casting the video and by featuring popular celebrities from South Korea they knew this would get the media's attention. They had a famous entertainer who is the chap thrusting in the lift, the guy in the yellow suit is a renowned comedian and the kid is popular from Korea's Got Talent. All helping it debut at number one in the Korean Pop Chart and gain 500k views on its launch day of 15th July.
Graphics chip giant Nvidia chief executive Jen-Hsun Huang said in a conference call with analysts today that consumers realize "a great tablet is better than a cheap PC." ... Huang said that orders for Tegra chips for Google Android and Microsoft Surface tablets are helping offset a slump in demand for PCs, which use Nvidia's graphics chips. Tegra is also used in new Lenovo and Asus tablets, among others.
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Since becoming CEO in 2002, Boyd has turned this former poster child of the dotcom bust into one of the great e-commerce success stories.
By Jon Birger, contributor
FORTUNE -- To say that Priceline CEO Jeffery Boyd's persona is different from that of the Negotiator -- the boisterous, charmingly obnoxious Priceline pitchman portrayed so delightfully by William Shatner -- is an epic understatement.
Boyd may try to dress like an Internet entrepreneur MORESep 11, 2012 5:00 AM ET
This year could begin a third act for Priceline's stock, a period of more moderate growth along with the challenges in navigating a shaky global economy.
by Kevin Kelleher, contributor
FORTUNE -- Few of the dot-com startups that rose in the late 90s and fell in the early 2000s were granted a second act. Of those that were, none has flourished as much as Priceline (PCLN), the online-travel site that appealed to MOREJan 4, 2012 10:11 AM ET
The holidays are upon us, so it's important to know that hotel room you booked online may not be yours after all.
By David A. Kaplan, contributor
FORTUNE -- So, what nightmare did you celebrate on Halloween Weekend? My family's was neither imagined nor fun: There had been a freakish winter snowstorm in the Northeast and many homeowners lost electricity in their homes due to downed power lines. At our house in MORENov 23, 2011 10:03 AM ET
A deal could be just days away, but insiders warn it could all unravel.
Politico reports that Google (GOOG) and the Department of Justice could be "just days away" from an agreement for the search giant to acquire ITA Flight pricing and scheduling software. But negotiations are getting tense and the deal could unravel at any moment.
Google announced its intentions to purchase ITA in July for $700 million.
Among conditions on the table are possible MORESeth Weintraub - Feb 25, 2011 12:40 PM ET
Apple's CEO moved up 31 places in Chief Executive magazine's 2010 ranking
Only Priceline's (PCLN) Jeffrey Boyd, Aflac's (AFL) Daniel Amos and Federated Investors' (FII) Christopher Donahue created more wealth in 2010 than Apple's (AAPL) Steve Jobs, according to Chief Executive's third annual ranking of 338 U.S. CEOs.
The magazine's wealth creation index leans heavily on the concept of economic margin -- defined as (operating cash flow - capital charge)/invested capital -- MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Dec 20, 2010 5:51 PM ET
Online sample-sale company tries to bring its model to luxury travel
At the Cotton House, one of only two hotels on the tiny Isle of Mustique, warm breezes drift in from the Caribbean, which is always in view. As you nibble on caviar and sip champagne at dusk, the only sounds are those of the waves gently breaking and a jazz singer crooning in the distance.
Daydreaming at work? Or maybe you MOREJessica Shambora, Writer-Reporter - Sep 30, 2009 8:00 AM ET
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