Startup funding for travel this week

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This week, travel startups announced more than $198 million in funding, including business management startup TravelPerk and half a dozen other companies.

Sean O’Neill

Traveling this week startups announced over $198 million in funding.

>>TravelPerk, a Barcelona-based travel agency, has raised $115 million in a Series D round.

General Catalyst led the round, giving the startup a valuation of $1.3 billion. The Barcelona-based company has raised $409 million to date.

See Skift’s coverage: TravelPerk Engages Former Booking.com CEO To Scale After Raising $115 Million.

>>Fly now Pay later, a financial technology company based in London, has raised a $75 million debt financing package provided by funds managed by Atalaya Capital Management, which also took an equity stake.

The startup will use the funding to further expand into the US market. Since its launch in 2015, it has raised a total of $150 million.

The company allows consumers to spread the cost of a trip over multiple payments, up to 12 monthly installments.

“Our proprietary platform is designed to make instant credit decisions, offering highly customized and digestible payment options to consumers traditionally not served by existing credit institutions,” said founder and CEO Jasper Dykes.

The startup has “hundreds” of customers, including Malaysia Airlines, Air Serbia and Azores Airlines.

>>Origin, a membership-based travel agency, has raised $5 million in seed funding.

Project A made the rounds.

The company offers tailor-made travel via a mobile app.

Origin was co-founded by Eli Bessert, who was previously a leader at Stitch Fix, an online tailoring service. Origin uses similar approaches to Stitch Fix to give travel consultants “superpowers” through services that take advantage of automation and machine learning.

>>TripGrid, a travel management company, has closed a $1.6 million financing round. Investors included Portland Seed Fund and Cascade Seed Fund.

The Portland-based startup had previously raised $1.5 million. It provides automation software to help with group corporate travel.

>>AirStudent, an online travel company based in Johannesburg, has raised an undisclosed seed funding round from E Squared Investments in 2021.

The startup helps students travel between home and university in southern Africa in coordinated groups, so they can take advantage of volume discounts for domestic travel negotiated directly with airlines.

The startup was founded in 2017 by Ndabenhle Ntshangase and Lwanda Shabalala, VentureBurn reported.

So far, these include Comair (which operates British Airways & Kulula.com locally), South Africa’s newest airline, Lift and Europcar.

>>Jet Camp, an online booking service for campgrounds and vacation parks, has closed a $572,000 (€500,000) seed round.

Falkensteiner Michaeler Tourism Group (FMTG) and Cunningham Holding participated.

The booking service website has nearly 23,000 verified campsites and holiday parks listed and attracted more than 4 million visitors in 2021.

>>TripGuru, an experience booking website, has raised an undisclosed amount from Velocity Ventures, a Singapore-based company with a focus on the hospitality and travel industry in Southeast Asia.

Business Phase Lead Raise
TravelPerk Series D General Catalyst $115 million
Fly now Pay later debt financing Atalaya $75 million
Origin Seed Project A $5 million
TripGrid Pre-Series A Portland Seed Fund $1.6 million
AirStudent Seed E-squared investments N/A
Jet Camp Seed FMTG and Cunningham $572,000
TripGuru Seed Velocity VENtures N/A

Skift cheat sheet:
We define a startup as a company created to test and build a repeatable and scalable business model. Few companies meet that definition. The rare ones that do often attract venture capital. Their funding rounds come in waves.

Startup capital is money used to start a business, often led by angel investors and friends or family.

Serie A financing is typically attracted by venture capitalists. The round is designed to help startup founders ensure that their product is something customers actually want to buy.

Series B financing is mainly about venture capitalist companies that help a company grow faster. These fundraising rounds can help recruit skilled workers and develop cost-effective marketing.

Series C Financing is normally about helping a company to expand, for example through acquisitions. In addition to VCs, hedge funds, investment banks, and private equity firms often participate.

Series D, E and beyond These mostly mature companies and the financing round can help a company prepare for an IPO or takeover. Different types of private investors can participate.

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