Google to acquire Frommer’s travel guidebooks

14 Aug 2012

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Google is snapping up the range of travel guidebooks by Frommer’s from John Wiley & Sons Inc for an undisclosed sum, as the internet search giant strives to become the online destination for travellers.

The acquisition, which is expected to close shortly, will fuse the travel publisher’s database of sights and accommodations into a company that wants its services present across the entire trip-planning process.

As a result, analysts said, Google is increasingly threatening a range of companies, like review site Yelp Inc and flight and hotel booking service TripAdvisor, which are elbowing each other for a slice of the growing online travel market, Reuters reported.

Frommer’s publishes 350 titles and covers 4,000 destinations. John Wiley & Sons Inc said proceeds from its sale will go toward other “growth opportunities” in its professional, scientific, technical, medical, scholarly and global education businesses.

This latest acquisition comes almost a year after Google spent US$151m to buy Zagat Survey, the provider of hotel, restaurant and nightclub reviews in cities around the globe.

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Tina held senior editorial positions at daily newspapers in Ottawa and Toronto

editorial@siliconrepublic.com