Tech startups involved in the travel industry raised nearly $118 million this week.
>>Patriot family homesa short-term rental platform focused on single-family homes in underserved market areas, raised $60 million in a Series B funding round led by TRT Holdings and Miramar Holdings.
Joe Riley founded Patriot Family Homes in 2018 shortly after returning from a US military deployment to Afghanistan. While deployed, Riley and his wife rented their home on Airbnb, during which they recognized the need for short-term rentals around US military bases. The focus has since expanded.
“We began serving exclusively military markets, which remain central to our DNA and growth, and we are proud to employ a large number of veterans and military spouses,” Riley said in an email. -mail. “Over the past few years, we have discovered that our brand also resonates with more underserved customer segments outside of military markets, where accommodation supply is very limited and overnight demand is underserved. This is especially true for groups and family reunions where larger homes and higher bedroom count serve a distinct need.
The company said it has 400 properties in 40 markets in 13 US states. The majority of properties are based in the southeast region of the country, in states including Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee, North Carolina and others, according to the website.
The funds will be used to acquire, renovate and operate single-family home rentals as the startup expands its market reach, as well as to hire employees and strengthen the technology platform.
>>Hotelmizea profit optimization platform for hotel resellers and other hotel booking businesses, secured $12 million in Series B funding led by Flashpoint Venture Capital.
Hotelmize’s proprietary technology, powered by artificial intelligence, tracks reimbursable hotel room prices as they fluctuate. Once a customer has booked a stay, Hotelmize can rebook the reservation on behalf of its customers if the rate subsequently drops, sharing the profits with the reseller.
Israel-based Hotelmize said it grew by 800% last year and retained notable brands in the industry. The startup said the surge in demand came as travel agencies seek to boost profits during a slow post-pandemic recovery.
Hotelmize has over 100 customers in 33 countries and plans to launch a new set of products this spring.
>>Inbentawhich provides a chatbot and other AI-powered services, raised $40 million in a round led by Tritium Partners.
Although Inbenta does not only focus on travel, this industry is one of its main sales areas. Travel industry customers include airlines GOL Airlines, Iberia, Vueling, Volotea, as well as online travel agency Skyscanner.
The California-based company has 250 total customers, she said. The investment will fund product innovation and expansion into new markets.
Inbenta said its configurable products work in 35 languages and require virtually no data training, and have a 90% correct answer rate.
“For more than a decade, we’ve been optimizing our technology so that customers can be understood and responded to in a helpful, authentic way, and most importantly, result in quick and impactful resolution,” said Jordi Torras, Founder and Chief Responsible Officer. of Inbenta’s innovation, in a press release.
Along with the funding announcement, the company said Melissa Solis is now its CEO and Torras continues as chief innovation officer.
>>NLXwhich offers a next-generation chatbot platform to enable customer self-service, raised $4.6 million in a second round of seed funding.
The round was led by IAG Capital Partners with participation from JetBlue Ventures, Flying Fish Partners and others.
The NLX service is aimed at a wide variety of industries, including travel. The startup raised $5 million a year ago. JetBlue also participated in this previous round and published a blog post at that time explaining why. Travel customers include Copa Airlines.
The AI-powered platform allows customers to create automated, personalized conversations with customers in one place, the startup said. The software includes reporting and analytics features that allow teams to adjust response based on real-time customer feedback.
>>Velada raised $1.1 million (€1 million) for a traveler-focused restaurant guide and reservation app in Spain.
Velada, which means “a good evening” in Spanish, is based in Madrid.
The information, curated by food critics and local experts, is available in Spanish and English and covers more than 1,000 locations in 16 cities and islands. The app also uses a proprietary algorithm to make personalized recommendations to users.
The app has had over 100,000 downloads since January 2021. The funding will allow the startup to add more destinations in 2023. The app will also add a premium subscription for concierge service and invitations to exclusive events.
|Company||To organise||Carry out||Raise|
|Patriot family homes||B-series||TRT Holdings and Miramar Holdings||$60 million|
|Hotelmize||B-series||Flashpoint Venture Capital||$12 million|
|Inbenta||Unspecified||Tritium Partners||$40 million|
|NLX||Seed II||IAG Capital Partners||$4.6 million|
Skift Cheat Sheet
Seed capital is the money used to start a business, often led by angel investors and friends or family.
A-Series funding usually comes from venture capitalists. The cycle aims to help startup founders ensure that their product is something customers actually want to buy.
B-series funding is mostly for venture capitalists that help a business grow faster. These fundraisers can help recruit skilled workers and develop profitable marketing.
C-Series financing generally consists of helping a company to grow, for example through acquisitions. In addition to VCs, hedge funds, investment banks, and private equity firms often participate.
D-Series, And, beyond These mostly mature companies and the funding cycle can help a company prepare to go public or be acquired. Various types of private investors could participate.