Farecast couldn’t have predicted this

Seattle’s John Cook is reporting that Microsoft is the mystery buyer of airline fare predictor Farecast. Microsoft issued this statement after Cook’s paper inquired:

We are pleased to announce that we have acquired Farecast, a Seattle-based smart travel search engine, and we welcome them to the Microsoft family. Farecast has been a partner of ours on MSN Travel and we look forward to working closely with the Farecast team to incorporate and apply its technology in new and interesting ways.

The purchase price has not been confirmed but it sounds like it will be in the $75 – $125 million range. Since being founded in 2006, Farecast has received $20 million in funding from Madrona Venture Group, Par Capital Management, Greylock Partners and Sutter Hill Ventures.