It's not clear there's enough market demand for a mobile app that books only independent and boutique properties. But some hoteliers might welcome the new app One Night if it can bring down its distribution costs, even marginally.
Travel Startup Funding This Week
Each week we round up travel startups that have recently received or announced funding. Please email Travel Tech Reporter Justin Dawes at [email protected] if you have funding news.
This week travel startups announced more than $8 million in funding.
>>One Night, a mobile app for same-day bookings at independent hotels, has raised $5 million in Series A funding. The app offers stays at more than 200 hotels in 15 U.S. cities, plus in London and Bangkok.
Swan and Legend, a venture capital firm, led the round.
This is the first external venture investment in the business. Hotel company Standard International incubated the business and provided the initial capital. Now Standard Hotels has spun off One Night, with Jimmy Suh, who is leading its operations as president.
One Night has four employees, but it plans to grow to 10 full-time workers in the coming months.
By the end of 2019, the app aims to offer 300 properties in 30 cities. It intends “to launch a new distribution channel,” too, though it left details vague. The company competes with niche market leader Hotel Tonight, which offers more than 50,000 hotels worldwide in a booking window expanded beyond same-day reservations. Airnb recently looked at buying Hotel Tonight, according to reports.
>>Groupcorner, a group reservations platform, said it raised an approximately $3.5 million (€3 million) round in the second-half of last year.
ISAI, SIDE Capital, BDR IT, and BPI participated in the round. The startup previously raised a seed round of about $1.4 million (€1.2 million).
Groupcorner, launched in 2013 and based in Burgandy, France, said it had more than 23,000 accommodation partners across Europe posting listings and receive bookings from groups, such as companies, clubs, sports teams, and extended families.
About 300 travel agencies are using its service to help streamline group bookings, said Antoine De Corson, co-founder and CEO.
Skift Cheat Sheet:
We define a startup as a company formed 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.
Seed capital is money used to start a business, often led by angel investors and friends or family.
Series A financing is typically drawn from venture capitalists. The round aims to help a startup’s founders make sure that their product is something that customers truly want to buy.
Series B financing is mainly about venture capitalist firms helping a company grow faster, or scale up. These fundraising rounds can assist with recruiting skilled workers and developing cost-effective marketing.
Series C financing is ordinarily about helping a company expand, such as through acquisitions. In addition to VCs, hedge funds, investment banks, and private equity firms often participate.
Series D, E and beyond These mainly mature businesses and the funding round may help a company prepare to go public or be acquired. A variety of types of private investors might participate.
Check out our previous startup funding roundups, here.
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Photo credit: A view of The Standard Downtown Los Angeles hotel. Parent company Standard Hotels incubated One Night, a mobile booking app for hotels, that it has now spun out to receive external venture capital investment. Standard Hotels