Priceline, Yahoo Make Moves

Companies acquire Active Hotels and FareChase upped its hotel clout in Europe with the acquisition of Active Hotels, a reservations service and distributor, for some $161 million. Active Hotels, which will operate as an independent business, has relationships with about 8,000 properties in Europe, Priceline said.

In the meantime, Yahoo, which purchased FareChase several months ago, is conducting a beta test of the travel-search engine to elicit user feedback as it sorts out how to implement the product. Yahoo’s move into the crowded and evolving travel-search field could test its partnership with Travelocity, the exclusive air, car and hotel booking engine on Yahoo Travel.