Saturday, September 5, 2009

Skype Synergies

Silver Lake, the private investment company that teamed with Texas Pacific Group to buy Sabre and Travelocity in 2007, just led an investment group which agreed to take a 65 percent stake in Skype for about $1.9 billion.

eBay will retain a 35 percent equity position in Skype.

When investors buy something like Skype, often there is no topic they like to expound upon more than the "synergies" they will generate from their purchases.

So, on a lazy Saturday afternoon, that got me to thinking.

Can you imagine the synergies if Silver Lake decided to mandate Skype use for customer call center agents in Sabre's Bangalore, India, and Montevideo,Uruguay, facilities?

And, if Silver Lake and Sabre required agents phoning in with questions about formats to don headsets and use Skype, as well?

I've heard a few complaints from travel agents about dealing with call center agents in faraway lands, but can you fathom the potential synergies and cost-savings?

With ideas like these, I could save Sabre billions of dollars.

OK, I'm just having a little fun here with Silver Lake-Skype-Sabre and the alliances, partnerships and unexpected bedfellows that arrive in the travel industry and the larger world of business.

Anyway, that reminds me: I was supposed to have downloaded Skype a week ago.

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