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Budget hotel aggregator Room On Call gets $2M funding

hotel-aggregatoBudget hotel aggregator Room On Call has raised $2 million (around Rs 13.3 crore) in funding led by on-vehicle advertising company CASHurDRIVE Marketing Pvt Ltd.

The funds will be used for marketing, scaling up operations and expanding its presence in tier 2 and tier 3 cities, the company said in a statement.

Last year in September, Room On Call had raised $300,000 in funding from US-based Yahoo executive Payal Syal.

The startup claims to have a presence in 42 cities with over 400 hotels on its platform. It aims to start operations across 150 locations and increase the current inventory from 8000 rooms to 20,000 rooms nights by the end of the year.

“We aim to put together non-star category hotels under one brand and then standardise the properties,” said Dhawan, chief operating officer, Room on Call.

Founded in 2015 by Pradeep Sajjan, Amit Goel, Nirupma Dhawan, Room On Call is a hospitality brand of Neocell Technologies India Ltd. It helps travellers to discover and book budget accommodations through web and app. Customers can also book by calling its helpline number. In addition, Room On Call serves as a platform for hotels to promote their properties online. Sajjan has earlier worked with PepsiCo while Goel was with PayPal and CA Technologies; Dhawan has previously worked with DHL Express.

The startup has been advised by web-based deal-enabling platform Enablers.

Room On Call faces tough competition from leading players such as OYO Rooms, Wudstay, Treebo, FabHotels, Vista Rooms and more. The biggest player in this space is OYO Rooms, which is in talks with smaller rival Zo Rooms to acquire it. OYO had last year raised  $100 million (Rs 635 crore then) in a funding round led by Japanese tech conglomerate SoftBank Corp.

Earlier in 2015, WudStay Travels Pvt Ltd acquired its offline rival Awesome Stays.

Last month, a former Cleartip executive floated budget hotel aggregator Comfy Stays, with the aim to target aggregate hotel rooms for under Rs 1,000 per day.

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