April 14, 2008 : Farecast has been sold in a deal that values the online travel search startup at more than $75 million, according to a source with knowledge of the situation.
The buyer was not known, and Farecast Chief Executive Hugh Crean declined to comment late Sunday.
But one natural choice would be Expedia, the Bellevue travel juggernaut. Expedia spokeswoman Katie Deines said Sunday that the company does not comment on "rumors and speculation."
In December, Farecast competitors SideStep and Kayak.com merged. At the time of that deal, Madrona Venture Group´s Matt McIlwain, an investor in Farecast, said it could have "big, positive implications for Farecast."
Farecast, which tries to tell consumers whether airfares will rise or fall on selected routes, was founded by University of Washington computer scientist Oren Etzioni. It has raised about $20.6 million from Greylock Partners, Par Capital Management, Sutter Hill Ventures, WRF Capital and others. Recently, Farecast has expanded with a hotel offering and international airfare predictions. It launched the airfare predictions in June 2006.