Travel seed funding this week – Skift
Each week, we bring together travel startups that have recently received or announced funding. Please email Sean O’Neill, Travel Technology Editor, at [email protected] if you have any news about the funding.
This week, travel startups announced more than $ 393 million in funding.
>>Brise Airways, a low-cost airline in the United States, closed $ 200 million in additional Series B equity financing.
Entities managed by BlackRock and Knighthead Capital Management led the way. The startup, led by former JetBlue founder David Neeleman, has raised more than $ 300 million in total.
The low-cost carrier will serve small US cities first, such as Tulsa, Oklahoma and Louisville, Kentucky. The aim is to fill in the gaps left by the largest network operators. For more background, read this analysis article in Airline Weekly.
>>Hopper, an online travel company, said it has raised $ 175 million in Series G equity financing, led by private equity firm GPI. The investment has set up the Montreal-based company for a possible IPO, possibly next year. See Skift’s story on Hopper’s latest fundraising.
>>Travel finance network raised at least $ 50 million in funding from private equity firm Court Square.
The American company, led by the co-founders of Hotels.com and Getaroom, is a “unique hotel distribution network” in the United States that provides “for most 3-star hotels a minimum income guarantee,” reported Skift this week.
>>TrovaTrip, a technology platform for travel planning and management, closed a $ 5 million funding round.
PSL Ventures led the round, with Elevate Capital and Oregon Venture Fund also participating alongside angel investors, such as Barney Harford, former CEO of Orbitz Worldwide and former COO of Uber, and Eric Breon, founder by Vacasa.
The startup, founded in 2017 in Portland, Oregon, helps people plan and book trips through certified tour operators. It allows subject matter experts, influencers and small businesses to organize group trips with their social media audience.
“With TrovaTrip you can follow your passion around the world – learn from your favorite photographer in Iceland, play disc golf in Cambodia with a professional athlete or go hiking with your hero in Patagonia,” said Nick Poggi, co- founder and CEO. “Our platform makes it easy for these experts, or ‘hosts,’ to plan, sell and organize trips around the world with their audience. “
The company said it takes the hassle out of planning, selling and managing trips led by an expert guide provided by the tour operator. “Hosts” can choose an itinerary offered by a tour operator and customize its marketing by adjusting prices, selling locations and managing reservations.
More than 200 so-called hosts are working with the startup to bring trips to their social media audience, and around 350 trips are planned for the remainder of 2021 and 2022. GeekWire has more details.
>>TurnoverBnB, a rental cleaning startup, closed a $ 4.5 million Series A funding round.
RET Ventures led the Honolulu-based startup, a graduate of the Blue Startups accelerator.
TurnoverBnb provides 20,000 short-term rental hosts and vacation rental property managers in Canada and the United States with digital tools to plan, pay and find Airbnb vacation rental cleaners and Airbnb cleaning services.
>>Tripbtoz, a hotel reservation platform and travel recommendation service, has raised $ 2.7 million in investment.
The South Korea-based company led by CEO Jung Ji-ha has seen sales surpass pre-pandemic levels.
It plans to expand to Singapore later this year while increasing direct inventories of hotel companies. As part of a partnership, large Korean bank KB is using the startup’s content for its TTBB travel app, the Korea Herald reported.
>>Mabaat, a professional short-term rental manager in Saudi Arabia, has raised $ 2.4 million (Saudi riy 9 million).
Derayah Ventures led the round.
Mabaat rents residences on behalf of the owners, handling marketing, online sales, payments and housekeeping.
Saudi Arabia saw its domestic tourism spending in 2020 increase by around 10% from the previous year, despite the pandemic.
>>Out of office, a mobile app promoting social travel and restaurant recommendations, closed a $ 1.6 million pre-seed round.
Brand Foundry led the round with investors including Chris Brown, former product manager at Orbitz.
“No more searching through your text messages, Instagram private messages or Yelp to plan your next getaway,” the company’s marketing copy said. “Everything you need to know is in Out of Office. “
The startup is co-founded by Coabi Kastan and Janine Seale, who launched the app in beta four months ago. Seale is the 95th black woman to raise more than $ 1 million in venture capital, the company said.
“We have both spent time at various high growth startups and we have always found ourselves disappointed with the lack of women as decision makers,” said co-founder Janine Seale. “With Out Of Office, we’re just as focused on providing better access to women like us, and more representation in general, as we are creating an app that will change the way you travel, forever. “
The startup should not be confused with one of the same name, Out of Office, which focuses on LGBTQ + travel.
>>Fox Holidays, a campground finder service, has raised $ 1.6 million (£ 1.17 million) in funding.
Fuel Ventures led the UK-based company, which strives to digitize the UK and European camping market. It allows consumers to find camping experiences based on amenities, features, nearby activities, and interests. The company claims to have the lowest commissions of its competitors.
>>SendSquared, which provides marketing communications technology to resorts, vacation rental management companies and hotel operators, closed a million dollar round-robin this month.
Cobalt Capital Partners, a private equity firm founded by Judy Vijums, led the round.
“SendSquared was created to address the need for a marketing platform that treats customers like people and not numbers,” said Nicolas Wegener, Founder and CEO of SendSquared. “Our system leverages data to better understand customer interests and preferences, and creates effective and relevant marketing. “
The company helps hotel brands interact with guests digitally, helping resorts and hotels maintain greater control over capacity and pricing while promising to increase guest satisfaction.
>>Nium, a fintech start-up growing in remittances for the travel industry, raised $ 200 million. See the story of Skift.
Skift cheat sheet:
We define a startup as a company formed to test and build a repeatable and scalable business model. Few companies meet this definition. The few that often attract venture capital. Their round tables come in waves.
Seed capital is the money used to start a business, often run by angel investors and friends or family.
Series A funding usually comes from venture capital firms. The cycle aims to help the founders of a startup make sure that their product is something that customers really want to buy.
B series funding is primarily for venture capital firms that help a business grow faster. These rounds of funding can help recruit skilled workers and develop profitable marketing.
C series financing is usually about helping a business grow, for example through acquisitions. In addition to VCs, hedge funds, investment banks and private equity firms often participate.
D series, E and beyond These predominantly mature companies and the round table can help a company prepare to go public or be bought out. Various types of private investors could participate.
Photo credit: David Neeleman’s new airline is called Breeze Airways. Brise Airways