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Published on Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Expedia leadership team in shock resignation



Expedia Group chief executive Mark Okerstrom and chief financial officer Alan Pickerill have suddenly resigned after clashing with the board over their reorganisation plans.

Chairman Barry Diller and his vice-chairman Peter Kern have rapidly stepped in to oversee the company's leadership team.

Okerstrom had been with the Seattle-based company for 13 years and took over as chief executive just over two years ago, roughtly at the same time as Pickerill, who joined in 2008, became CFO.

But they are understood to have disagreed with the board over plans to simplify its portfolio, which includes Hotels.com and Trivago, and compete for customers with the likes of Airbnb and Google.

"This reorganisation, while sound in concept, resulted in a material loss of focus on our current operations, leading to disappointing third-quarter results and a lacklustre near-term outlook," Diller said in a statement today.

"The Board disagreed with that outlook, as well as the departing leadership's vision for growth, strongly believing the Company can accelerate growth in 2020."

Expedia has also announced a new share repurchase plan, making a total of 29 million available. Diller, who became chairman in 2002 when his InterActiveCorp acquired a controlling interest in Expedia, said he would buy additional shares in the group 'as a tangible sign of my faith in and commitment to Expedia's long-term future'.

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