Travel search engine Kayak.com says it has raised $196 million in a round of venture funding. At least $150 million of that will go toward the purchase of rival SideStep. The company will use some of those funds to expand internationally, and hopes to take on Expedia as the No. 1 travel site online.
Updated at 11:58 a.m. PST Wednesday: added response from Google and links to two more letters.
A top Republican in the House of Representatives is demanding that Google answer a barrage of questions about privacy, some of which are related to the company's proposed purchase of the DoubleClick advertising firm.
Rep. Joe Barton, who has positioned himself as a privacy advocate and previously criticized the merger last month, complained in a letter to Google CEO Eric Schmidt that the company had initially agreed to let his aides visit the so-called Googleplex in Mountain View, Calif. but then … Read more
There was a relatively small acquisition on Tuesday: nCipher, a U.K.-based encryption specialist, purchased storage encryption appliance vendor NeoScale Systems. This could be looked at as basic industry consolidation, but the impact could ripple further.
Encryption and, more specifically, key management really needs a set of standards to prosper and grow. Key management standards must include standard ways to connect encrypting devices to key managers, key managers to key managers, and so on. There are a few nascent standards efforts in this area, but nothing concrete.
Here's how this niche merger could impact the stalemate. nCipher has … Read more
PALO ALTO, Calif.--There is something unusual, and perhaps a little worrisome, in the arguments a band of special-interest groups has invoked against Google's purchase of the DoubleClick advertising firm.
The arguments can be found in a series of three letters (PDF) sent to the Federal Trade Commission starting in April. The letters ask, in part, that the FTC "use its authority to review mergers to halt Google's proposed acquisition of DoubleClick."
It's true, of course, that the FTC shares responsibility for reviewing mergers with the Department of Justice. What's odd is the letters … Read more
An odd thing happened in Washington this week. A dozen Republicans demanded a public hearing into Google's proposed $3.1 billion acquisition of DoubleClick because, they claim, "the privacy implications of such a merger are enormous."
This demand came in a letter from those politicians (PDF), including Rep. Dennis Hastert, to their Democratic counterparts, who now have the power to decide whether to haul Google in for questioning.
What's odd is that these are the same Republicans who have spent their political careers extolling the virtues of mergers when telecommunications giants are vying to acquire one … Read more
Mergers and acquisitions, M&A, business development, strategic development, corporate development, there are lots of names for the business of acquiring companies. They all sound important, even exciting. But whoever said, "may you live in exciting times," didn't necessarily mean that to be a prophecy of good things to come.
On the contrary, if you're like most investors, employees or executives, it's more of a curse. You see, in the corporate world, exciting usually means risky. And there's probably nothing riskier or more prone to failure than merging with another company.
I can … Read more
This blog was updated at 3:30 p.m.
Gateway announced Monday that it has agreed to take over the controlling stake in Paris-based PC vendor Packard Bell.
Gateway has exercised its right of first refusal to purchase all of the shares of PB Holding Company, the parent company of Packard Bell, from Lap Shun (John) Hui and Clifford Holdings Limited, also controlled by Hui. Both companies control 75 percent of Packard Bell stock. Financial details of the transaction have not yet been disclosed.
The announcement wasn't a surprise--Gateway and Lenovo have waged a public battle over Packard Bell--with … Read more
Blake Krikorian can't be blamed for using surfer slang to describe his elation at being acquired by Echostar Communications on Monday.
The co-founder and CEO of Sling Media, maker of the Slingbox set-top device, along with his brother Jason, came up with a game-changing idea for the mobilization of TV content and now seven years later, they've finally cashed in. A day after EchoStar Communications, which owns satellite provider Dish Network, announced it would acquire Sling for $380 million, Krikorian spoke to CNET News.com about what it means for the company, future products and relationships with content … Read more
As expected, the proposed union of Google and ad-tech firm DoubleClick is about to get some congressional scrutiny.
According to an aide, the U.S. Senate Judiciary subcommittee that deals with antitrust issues has scheduled a hearing for September 27 entitled "An Examination of the Google-DoubleClick Merger and the Online Advertising Industry: What Are the Risks for Competition and Privacy?"
A witness list hasn't yet been finalized but is likely to be released Thursday, the subcommittee aide said. But the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that lawyers from Google and its rivals Yahoo and Microsoft are likely … Read more
F5 networks on Tuesday announced that it would acquire Massachusetts-based start-up Acopia Networks. Why would application-layer networking leader F5 delve into file virtualization? Because more and more enterprises are moving toward centralized file services to cut capital and operating costs. These financial benefits ignore the fact that accessing a 10MB PowerPoint file over the WAN can be as slow as molasses. Like other areas of WAN optimization, deploying intelligent networking devices to cache files or limit chatty file protocol on both sides of the pipes can speed up access and keep users from going insane.
Adding file virtualization to WAN … Read more