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Archer Aviation expects its flying taxis to be in the air in 2025, and Atmosfy wants to change the way people leave dining reviews.

Series: Startups This Week

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.

Three travel tech companies announced funding this week totaling nearly $230 million.

>>Archer Aviation, which is developing an electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft for urban use, has raised $215 million in equity investment. 

Investment was led by Stellantis, with support from Boeing, United Airlines, and ARK Investment Management.

The California-based company, which went public in Sept. 2021, has now raised over $1.1 billion.  

The aircraft, called Midnight, is designed to hold a pilot with four passengers and luggage for urban trips of 20-50 miles at speeds of up to 150 miles per hour. It is powered by six independent battery packs, each supporting a pair of electric engines, the company said.

Archer’s Midnight aircraft has room for four passengers.

Subject to approval by the Federal Aviation Administration, Archer plans to begin commercial operations in 2025. The company has been approved to begin testing and expects to deliver its first product to the U.S. Air Force later this year or early next year. 

The funding will go toward continued development of the aircraft and related technology, as well as construction of manufacturing and test facilities.

“Over the last quarter, we’ve seen the U.S. government make an unwavering commitment that America will lead the way in commercializing eVTOL aircraft, the FAA validated the timeline for eVTOL aircraft to begin operations in the U.S. in 2025, and leaders in the mobility industry, Stellantis, United Airlines and Boeing, have come together to invest in Archer’s future,” said Adam Goldstein, Archer’s founder and CEO, in a statement. “The pace at which our industry is advancing is unprecedented. 

>>Atmosfy, an app to find and review dining and nightlife venues, has raised $12 million in seed funding.

The round was led by Redpoint Ventures, with participation from Kygo, Streamlined Ventures, Industry Ventures, Canaan Partners, Village Global, Progression Fund, and Convivialite Ventures. 

The San Francisco-based company said its app focuses on users leaving video reviews for local restaurants, hotels, bars, nightclubs, and festivals. The company said its app has 1 million business listings in more than 10,000 cities worldwide.

“As a former bartender, I witnessed the challenges faced by local businesses in promoting their brand and generating positive online reviews,” said Michael Ebel, founder and CEO of Atmosfy, in a statement. “During COVID, that difficulty for businesses was exponentially amplified, and it was clear there was a new solution needed to help support them. Atmosfy gave consumers a way to highlight their experiences through video, inspire others to come visit, and support the businesses that were still open.”

The new funding will go toward strengthening the platform, integrating personalization capabilities, developing partnerships, and adding more listings.

>>HalalBooking, an online travel agency for hotels focused on the Muslim market, has raised $2.5 million toward its series B round of funding. 

That makes $7.5 million, including a $5 million convertible loan raised in 2021, toward the $10 series B round slated to be finished by the end of the year. The startup raised $2.5 million in a series A round in 2019.

The latest funding values the company at $102 million, HalalBooking said.

The London-based app said it can help users find properties to fulfill specific needs, such as a resort with a ladies-only beach, a hotel with halal food, or a villa with a secluded pool.

Elnur Seyidli, the CEO of HalalBooking, said in a statement that the the startup has a goal of becoming a unicorn company — meaning a valuation of at least $1 billion. 

“There is a lot of interest from institutional investors, who have been closely watching our growth since the pandemic, which is leading us to consider a larger, institutional [$30 million to $40 million] series C round to further accelerate our growth rate. This would increase the likelihood of reaching the $1 billion goal in 3-4 years, rather than in, say, 6-7 years of more organic growth,” Seyidli stated. 

The startup said it had a record $10 million in sales in July, a 45% percent increase from the year before. It aims to reach $75 million in sales for the year, which would be 45% growth. 

Archer AviationUnspecifiedStellantis$215 million
AtmosfySeedRedpoint Ventures$12 million
HalalBookingPartial Series BUndisclosed$2.5 million

Skift Cheat Sheet

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. These fundraising rounds can assist in 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.

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Tags: aircraft, Archer Aviation, dining, eVTOL, funding, halal, hotels, muslim, reviews, the prompt, travel booking, travel tech, travel technology, vcroundup

Photo credit: Archer Aviation expects commercial use to begin in 2025. Archer Aviation / Archer Aviation

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