Priceline (NASDAQ:BKNG) made news Friday with the announcement of its $2.6 billion buyout offer for OpenTable (UNKNOWN:UNKNOWN), the leading online reservation portal for U.S. diners. The offer price came in at a 47% premium to OpenTable's closing share price before the announcement, or a rich 13 times sales.
With lower profitability than Priceline and 2013 revenue that amounts to less than 3% of Priceline's $6.8 billion, OpenTable looks, on paper, to be an expensive target that may not move the needle in the near term. However, investors should pay attention to the bigger picture.
Priceline management has an impressive track record of acquiring complimentary businesses that can scale up rapidly and benefit from Priceline's presence globally. CEO Darren Huston has even gone so far as claiming that Glenn Vogel -- Priceline's Corporate Development lead -- has made some of the Internet's most successful acquisitions such as Booking.com and Kayak. Given this track record and the company's willingness to pay cash up front for OpenTable, the Priceline team believes in OpenTable's growth prospects.
In the included video, Fool Technology Analysts Max Macaluso and Nathan Hamilton talk about Priceline's rationale in acquiring OpenTable and the upside that remains for the company under the Priceline umbrella, in addition to discussing the sympathetic 14% pop that Yelp (NYSE:YELP) shares experienced as well.
Nathan Hamilton owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool recommends Apple, OpenTable, Priceline Group, and Yelp. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple and Priceline Group. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.