3 Companies Modernizing Air Travel: Startup Funding Roundup



Seven travel startups from a variety of sectors have raised over $150 million in the past two weeks.

The biggest was hotel tech company Mews at $110 million. And there were raises by three startups attempting to modernize the air travel industry.

Below are the industry’s latest fundraises.

Voi: $25 Million

Voi, which provides public access to e-scooters and e-bikes in Europe, has raised $25 million in an oversubscribed financing round.

Investors included VNV Global, Raine Group, Nineyards Equity, Balderton, Creandum, Project A, Stena, Black Ice Capital, and individuals including founders and employees.

The company also secured debt financing in conjunction with the venture capital. 

The company has now raised more than $540 million in equity and debt, according to compiled reports on Crunchbase.

Sweden-based Voi partners with cities and transportation companies to provide its vehicles for public use. Through the Voi app, users can locate a nearby vehicle and unlock it by scanning the QR code on the handlebar. 

The funding will go toward expanding the company’s e-scooter and e-bike fleet. 

“Amidst the rapid consolidation in the European market, this financing puts us in a great place to expand,” said Fredrik Hjelm, CEO of Voi in a statement.

Voi says it completed a record-breaking 68 million rides in 2023 and expanded to cities including London, Vienna, Oslo, Milan, and Marseille.

Over the past two years, the company’s revenue has grown by nearly 50%, gross profit has more than doubled, and overhead costs have been reduced by nearly 50%, Hjelm stated.

“Looking ahead, we see numerous promising opportunities as cities pivot from being car-centric to driving sustainable mobility, and consumers increasingly integrating micromobility into their daily routines,” Hjelm stated. 

NLX: $12 Million

NLX, which provides customer service tech to clients including airlines, has raised $12 million in series A funding.

Cercano led the round, with support from Thayer Ventures, HL Ventures, IAG Capital Partners, JetBlue Ventures, and Tech Square Ventures.

New York City-based NLX said its generative AI-based software can provide personalized customer service via voice or chat, meant to ease the burden on call centers. Clients can also manage and analyze customer conversations through the NLX platform. 

Clients have included Copa Airlines and United Airlines.

TravelJoy: $10 Million

TravelJoy, an AI-based platform to help individual travel agents plan trips, has raised $10 million in series A funding. 

The round was led by Theresia Gouw of Acrew Capital, who is also a former board member of Hotel Tonight and Trulia, with support from NFX, Founder Collective, Forerunner, and Concrete Rose. 

San Francisco-based TravelJoy said its platform includes tools for customer relationship management, workflow automation, messaging, invoicing, payments, proposals, itineraries, and group trip management. The company also has booking partnerships with travel insurance startup Faye and Viator, the tours and attractions marketplace owned by TripAdvisor. 

“Our goal is to empower the next generation of travel curators to create the kind of magical travel experiences that I saw with my mom’s agency, while eliminating the excessive stress and overhead she had to go through,” said TravelJoy co-founder Dayo Esho in a statement. 

TravelJoy said its platform facilitates over $1 billion in annual travel spend.   

The funding will go toward strengthening the product and hiring. 

Hunting Land Rentals By Owner: $1 Million

Hunting Land Rentals By Owner, which connects hunters with landowners, has raised $1 million in seed funding. 

The round was led by Great North Ventures, with support from Comeback Capital, Gopher Angels, and Right Side Capital. 

The Minnesota-based company said its website connects hunters with landowners for free, and they can then complete site visits and make a deal. The company makes money through services like lease finding and land advising. 

The funding will go toward growing its landowner base and user base, as well as releasing a mobile app. 

Airnguru: $1 Million

Airnguru, which offers pricing software for airlines, has raised $1 million in pre-series A funding from a group of angel investors. 

The Chile-base startup said its software can automatically and continually set and manage fares based on the latest market information. 

Clients include Qatar Airways, British Airways, Avianca, Copa Airlines, LOT Polish Airlines, Finnair, and SKY Airline.

The investment will go toward strengthening the startup’s existing offerings and adding more products. 

Mews: $110 Million

Mews, which provides a property management system for hotels, raised $110 million at a $1.2 billion valuation.

(See Skift’s story.)

Kinnevik led the round, with support from LGVP, Revaia, Goldman Sachs Asset Management, and Notion Capital. 

Mews raised $185 million in late 2022.

Prague-based Mews said its platform, which manages tasks like check-in and housekeeping, is used by 5,000 hospitality brands in 85 countries.

Indicio

Indicio, which offers software meant to simplify the identification process during air travel, has raised an undisclosed series A funding round.   

The lead investor was SITA, the legacy company that provides much of the air travel industry’s operational software. 

Seattle-based Indicio said its software allows passengers to create a digital version of their physical passport, which can be stored in an app alongside digital versions of visas, boarding passes, and frequent flyer IDs. 

Indicio in 2023 partnered with SITA and the government of Aruba, enabling travelers to pre-clear entry requirements before leaving home. 

Company Stage Lead Raise
Voi Unspecified Unspecified $25 million
NLX Series A Cercano $12 million
TravelJoy Series A Theresia Gouw $10 million
Hunting Land Rentals By Owner Seed Great North Ventures $1 million
Airnguru Unspecified Pre-series A $1 million
Mews Unspecified Kinnevik $110 million
Indicio Series A SITA Undisclosed

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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