The two companies have teamed up in the past to give Expedia customers in the U.K. the option to buy train tickets directly. Expedia said SilverRail will continue to work on “transforming the consumer experience of rail for carriers, travel retailers, and corporate travel companies.” The deal is expected to close in the middle of the year, and Expedia did not disclose financial terms.
“Rail is ready for an online revolution, and we’re ready to be a part of it. Rail’s shift online is one of the fastest growing areas of innovation in the $1.3 trillion travel market, and SilverRail is powering that innovation,” Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in a statement. “We are tremendously excited to welcome the incredibly talented SilverRail team into the Expedia family.”
It is unclear how closely the two firms will integrate their services, but the deal could lead to the option to buy train tickets directly in more markets. This could be a big factor abroad, where SilverRail says rail is becoming a better travel option than flying due to the rise of high speed rail and the deregulation of European markets.
Acquisitions have always been a part of Expedia’s DNA. Last year it acquired Trover, the photo app for travelers that former Expedia CEO Rich Barton started five years ago with his brother-in-law Jason Karas. Trover was the first company Expedia has acquired since buying HomeAway for a whopping $3.9 billion in December 2015. Before that deal, the travel behemoth gobbled up Travelocity, Trivago, and Orbitz.