Mark Okerstrom and Alan Pickerill leave Expedia Group

Mark Okerstrom and Alan Pickerill leave Expedia Group
Expedia Group CEO, Mark Okerstrom recently left the company
Published: 8 December 2019 - 5:45 a.m.
By: Josh Corder

Expedia Group’s CEO, Mark Okerstorm and its CFO, Alan Pickerill have left the organisation.

The company announced the news on December 4, with the chairman, Barry Diller saying: "Ultimately, senior management and the board disagreed on strategy."

As the company looks to replace the pair, Diller and vice chairmain, Peter Kern will oversee the company's executive leadership team, managing day-to-day operations, while chief strategy officer, Eric Hart will take the role of acting CFO.

Diller elaborated: "Expedia embarked on an ambitious reorganisation plan with the goal of bringing our brands and technology together in a more efficient way. 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. The board disagreed with that outlook, as well as the departing leadership’s vision for growth".

GlobalData’s head of R&A and travel & tourism, Nick Wyatt suggested that the underperforming Q3 results were partly due to changes in Google's search engine algorithm. The change made it more difficult to become visible on search results, meaning Expedia Group platforms recieved less exposure and traffic.

Wyatt explained: “Google will continue to impact online travel and online travel agencies (OTAs) will need to adapt. Expedia will need to recruit successors capable of taking up the challenge.”

He concluded: “It will be fascinating to see what path Expedia takes as it looks to navigate the choppy waters of Google and improved hotel direct booking incentives.”

In Expedia Group's 8-K SEC filing, it explained that Okerstrom did not have any disagreement with the company on any matter relating to its operations, policies or practices.

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