Sabre lost a bunch of money for the year, but a review of the stats shows that it actually gained global market share, surpassing Travelport GDS (i.e. Galileo and Worldspan.)
In a declining travel market, the Sabre global distribution system (GDS) crunched 383 million transactions in 2008, 3 percent fewer than in 2007. But Travelport's segments fell faster, 11 percent, to 372.1 million. Of course, it is possible that Amadeus may have processed even more segments than Sabre. It's hard to say because Amadeus is a private company and hasn't publicized its numbers. It also counts transactions differently than Sabre and Travelport do.
So, how did Sabre overtake Travelport? Methinks that one major factor is that Expedia swapped out longtime partner Worldspan in favor of Sabre as Expedia's primary res system. And, all of those Expedia.com bookings definitely add up.
You have to love the travel industry. Expedia helps Travelocity's owner, Sabre, overtake Travelport, which controls Orbitz. So many plot twists:)