Travel seed funding this week

Skift take

Pickyoutrail received funding to expand its online international vacation booking services; its operation is surprisingly sophisticated for a small startup. In addition, investors also recently announced bets on smart hotels, city lounges and luggage storage places.

Sean O’Neill, Skift

This week, travel startups announced more than $ 8 million in funding.

>>Choose your trail, an online travel agency, has received nearly $ 3 million in Series A funding.

Angel investors led the round, including Kumar Vembu, the founder of billing software startup GoFrugal. Pickyourtrail graduated from the Amadeus Next incubator.

Pickyourtrail, based in Chennai, India, focuses on selling international travel overseas, where customers can put together airline, hotel and sightseeing packages. Consumers in Southeast Asia mainly use traditional travel agencies to trace the details of their vacations. This startup hopes to woo them online with an algorithm that matches travel recommendations with personal preferences.

Since its creation five years ago with seed capital of $ 1,700, Pickyourtrail has grown. It ended 2018 by having made it possible to plan 8,000 trips. The company, which now has around 90 employees, claims to have been profitable every month for the past 60 months, less than one, said co-founder Hari Ganapathy.

>>Sensor flow, a smart energy management startup, has raised $ 2.7 million in Series A funding.

Private investor Pierre Lorinet led the way. The startup, founded in Singapore in 2016, has raised $ 3.5 million to date.

SensorFlow, which has 30 employees, aims to make hotels in Singapore, Indonesia and Hong Kong energy efficient by applying the smart home trend to the hospitality industry. By using sensors to detect movement and wasted energy, internet-connected devices can help hotels be more efficient in their energy use. The funding will help the company enter new markets in Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and the Philippines.

>>3DEN, which aims to provide coworking, living room and nap areas in cities, has raised $ 2 million in seed funding. It intends to offer services that a traveler might expect in an airport lounge, only without the airport.

Investors include b8ta and Graphene Ventures. New York-founded 3DEN will open its first spaces on March 15 in the Hudson Yards residential, office and retail complex. While you can reserve equipment in space, consumers do not reserve time there. It will be purely a drop-in destination.

Earlier this month, Reload, a mobile-first online reservation service for booking hotel rooms by the hour, said it was expanding its reservation service to offer hourly rentals of short-term spaces in private homes in San Francisco, New York and Los Angeles. .

>>Bounce, which offers more than 100 locations in New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Washington, DC, Los Angeles and Boston for travelers to store their luggage, said that late last year it had closed a initial funding of $ 1.2 million.

Investors who participated in the round included Managing Partner of Structured Capital, Jillian Manus, Seabed Venture Capital, Rob Chesnut and Michael Hyatt.

The San Francisco-based startup faces competition. Earlier this month, LuggageHeroes, an international network of commendable storage space for travel bags, said it had raised $ 1.45 million in funding. Other actors with similar or overlapping services include without horns and Green.

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 fundraising rounds 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 or expand. These rounds of funding can help recruit skilled workers and develop profitable marketing.
C series financing usually involves 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.
View our previous seed funding reports here.

About Brad S. Fulton

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