Travelport is keeping its options open about going public and is gauging its prospects as it observes how General Motors, Kayak and private equity-held companies are faring in their IPO efforts, an official said.
Jeff Clarke, president and CEO of privately held Travelport, said it was a positive sign that its GDS and technology rival, Amadeus, went public earlier this year in Madrid, and he wished Kayak good luck in its proposed IPO, announced today.
Travelport and Amadeus had engaged in a high-stakes competition to see which company would go public first, but Travelport pulled out of an IPO effort in February 2010 and Amadeus went public a couple of months later.
Clarke said the public markets are “quite skittish” about companies with high debt, but Travelport is watching market dynamics and keeping its options open.
In an ironic twist at the PhoCusWright conference in Scottsdale, Ariz., today, it was Philippe Chereque, executive vice president, commercial, for Amadeus, who posed the question to Clarke about Travelport’s IPO strategy.
Full disclosure: The writer does some work with PhoCusWright as a research analyst.