In what may ultimately develop into a massive change in the way OTAs and hotels do business with one another, Expedia has quietly introduced its Accelerator program for hotels, which allows hotels to bid against each one another for prime placement on Expedia’s hotel search results.
In an interview with Skift, Expedia Inc. CFO Mark Okerstrom described Expedia’s new Accelerator program for hotels, a plan that turns Expedia’s search results’ pages into a “marketplace” and has hotels competing against one another for bragging rights in Expedia’s listings.
“We are also offering the opportunity for hotels to augment that quality nature of their listing with incremental economics to help give them a little bit of a boost,” Okerstrom says. “It is a program we call Accelerator. And so we just transitioned the model to one of much more of a marketplace. So I think we will leave it to the various hotel companies to dictate for themselves how they use our marketplace and we would encourage them to do it in a way that maximizes what’s best for them.”
Okerstrom says the transition in Expedia’s hotel business model has been under way for a year. The basics of the Accelerator program were finalized in the fourth quarter.
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