Orbitz is on the hunt for a buyer and drawing interest

January 20, 2015, 7:48 PM UTC
Orbitz Worldwide Inc. Illustrations As Revenue Beats Forercasts
The Orbitz Worldwide Inc. application (app) is demonstrated for a photograph on an Apple Inc. iPhone 5 in San Francisco, California, U.S., on Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. Orbitz Worldwide Inc.'s second-quarter earnings surged as the travel-booking website benefited from higher demand. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Photograph by David Paul Morris — Bloomberg via Getty Images

Orbitz Worldwide, the online travel company that owns Orbitz.com and Cheaptickets.com, is on the prowl for an interested buyer.

The company, which has a market value of over $1 billion, is reaching out to potential buyers, sources close to the matter told Bloomberg News. Chicago-based Orbitz (OWW) has already attracted attention from private-equity funds and other online companies. The sources declined to name names.

That speculation led investors to send shares of Orbitz up more than 8% in recent trading on Tuesday.

Orbitz is looking to sell itself right as U.S. travel is expected to ramp up, helping boost its revenues to a record $932 million this year, according to analyst estimates.

The online travel agent went public in 2007. Prior to hitting the public markets, it was part of privately-held Travelport Ltd, which was purchased by Blackstone Group (BX) in 2006. It competes with Priceline (PCLN) and Expedia (EXPE), among others.

An Orbitz spokesperson said that the company does not “comment on rumors and speculation about potential transactions and market activity.”

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