Kayak and Sidestep merge, plan for IPO

Travel search engines Kayak and Sidestep will merge to form a new company, according to reports. As part of the deal, Kayak raised another $196 million from current investors Sequoia Capital, General Catalyst Partners and Accel Partners as well as from Sidestep investors Norwest Venture Partners and Trident Capital and new investors Oak Investment Partners and Lehman Brothers Venture Partners. The merger will create the fifth largest online travel destination. That sad boast might make you wonder, how'd they get so many VCs on board?

The same way flatlining startups always do: the promise of an imminent IPO. Or at least that's what Trident Capital's Woody Marshall told VentureBeat.