Arthur Frommer reacquires travel book brand from Google

Travel expert plans to resume publishing of the travel books, which the Web giant acquired but killed last month.

Frommer's online travel guide. Frommer Travel Guide

If you were lamenting the loss of Arthur Frommer's travel guides, take heart: the travel expert has acquired the brand from Google and plans to resume publishing the books.

The search giant acquired the Frommer's brand last summer from Wiley & Sons, including its travel guides and hotel ratings, for an undisclosed price. However, last month, authors of the popular travel guides told travel news site Skift that Google had ceased publication of the print version.

Frommer sold the travel book line to Simon & Schuster in 1977. It changed hands a few more times and stayed with Wiley & Sons until Google's purchase.

Frommer confirmed in a phone call with the Assocated Press this evening that he had reacquired the brand.

"It's a very happy time for me," said Frommer, 83. "We will be publishing the Frommer travel guides in e-book and print formats and will also be operating the travel site Frommers.com."

Google confirmed that it had returned the Frommer's brand to its founder and said it was licensing travel content to him, although it did not reveal the terms of the deal.

"We're focused on providing high-quality local information to help people quickly discover and share great places, like a nearby restaurant or the perfect vacation destination," a Google spokesperson told CNET. "That's why we've spent the last several months integrating the travel content we acquired from Wiley into Google+ Local and our other Google services."

Coupled with Google's Zagat purchase, it appeared that Google's Frommer acquisition was part of Google's push into the travel industry. But it was unclear at the time what Google would do with the printed travel guides.

Google quietly removed the bookstore from the Frommers.com site in September.

 

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