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Orbitz considers alternatives for business unit

CHICAGO (AP) -- Orbitz Worldwide Inc. said Friday that it is exploring strategic alternatives for its Away Network business unit. The network includes the away.com, trip.com, gorp.com and AdventureFinder.com websites that provide specialized travel news and deals.

Orbitz said that the company has reassessed its investments, particularly given recent gains in its hotel business. As part of that review, it determined that the Away Network business, either as a whole or in parts, would be more valuable to another company.

The company said the revenue associated with the business is not material to its overall financial performance and that a sale of some or all of its assets would not affect its outlook for 2013.

Orbitz, an online travel company with a number of sites, including cheaptickets.com and orbitz.com, reported Thursday that it fourth-quarter loss widened on an impairment charge, but revenue topped market expectations. The company said the 7 percent increase in revenue was helped by more hotel bookings, higher advertising revenue and an increase in money spent per transaction on flights and hotels.

Orbitz shares rose 18 cents, or 5.7 percent, to close at $3.33.