B2B Travel Startup Hotel Engine Scores $ 65 Million Series B
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You know the story now. As COVID cases increase, home actions like Peloton and Zoom are exploding. When COVID cases drop, businesses focused on the outside world take a hit.
But there is one startup that was able to avoid the omicron scares: Hotel Engine, a global B2B member-only booking platform that just landed a $ 65 million Series B at a unicorn-level review. Now it’s pure diesel.
All aboard the hotel’s motor train
Led by backer Telescope Partners and with participation from Blackstone, Hotel Engine’s latest round of funding was valued at $ 1.3 billion. This is a massive increase from the startup’s $ 150 million valuation over its $ 15 million Series A in 2019. Not bad for a travel company resisting a pandemic unpredictable and upsetting for the industry.
Its concept is simple: to help corporate clients find the best accommodation rates and “optimize their travel programs” while helping hotels attract “high added value” travelers. Surprisingly enough, it’s not just the promise or the potential that makes investors flock to cash. Hotel Engine has made profits over the past year:
- Core revenue bookings jumped just over 200% in the year between Q3 2020 and Q3 2021, while its customer base grew by 60% during the same period , TechCrunch reported.
- Overall, Hotel Engine is used by more than 550,000 people, 40,000 businesses and 700,000 hotels in 185 countries, according to the company.
Overall, the hotel industry is starting to come back to life. In November, PYMNTS reported that Hilton Worldwide Holdings saw its revenue increase 132% year-on-year in the third quarter and was down less than 15% from the pre-pandemic glory days of 2019.
Bring down the house: Speaking of the travel finance boom, Life House, a boutique hotel operator that sells software to independent hotel owners to help them with operations, on Thursday scored a Series C of $ 60 million. The tour was co-led by travel site Kayak and Inovia Capital. According to its founder, the start-up has grown more than 600% since the start of the pandemic, a shining distinction for an industry that mainly needed lifeboats over the past two years.
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