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Expedia spooks investors with CEO change

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Expedia Group Inc. shares fell 13% in the extended session Thursday, as investors appeared nervous by a CEO change and looked past a quarterly beat for the online travel company.

Expedia
EXPE,
+3.30%

earned $132 million, or 92 cents a share, in the fourth quarter, compared with $177 million, or $1.11 a share, in the year-ago period.

Adjusted for one-time items, the company earned $1.72 a share. Revenue rose 10% to $2.89 billion. Analysts polled by FactSet expected adjusted EPS of $1.67 on revenue of $2.87 billion.

“We delivered on our full-year guidance and drove record results, all while completing a massive transformation and navigating the inherent volatility that comes with that,” Chief Executive Peter Kern said in a statement. “Our work is finally starting to deliver results, and we are in the best place we’ve ever been technologically.”

In a separate press release, however, Expedia said that Kern was being replaced by Ariane Gorin, who has held various executive roles at Expedia since 2013 and most recently served as president of Expedia for Business.

The appointment is effective on May 13, the company said. Kern has served as Expedia CEO since 2020 and will remain a board member and the company’s vice chairman to “ensure a smooth transition,” Expedia said.

Shares of Expedia ended the regular trading day Thursday up 3.3%. The stock has gained 33% in the past 12 months, compared with an advance of 21% for the S&P 500 index
SPX
in the same period.



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