Bangalore-based Ruptub Solutions Pvt. Ltd, the operator of online budget hotels aggregator Treebo Hotels, has raised Rs 112 crore ($16.7 million) in its Series B funding round that was led by Bertelsmann India Investments, the strategic investment vehicle of international media company Bertelsmann.
Existing investors SAIF Partners and Matrix Partners India also took part in the round, Treebo said in a statement. The company plans to use the fresh round of funds to strengthen its marketing outreach and technology.
“Treebo is serving a huge unmet need in the budget travel space – that of reliable and affordable accommodation,” said Pankaj Makkar, managing director at Bertelsmann India. “Over the last one year, they have maintained razor sharp focus on delivering a great guest experience, and have extensively deployed technology in all parts of their operations to accomplish this objective.”
Treebo was founded in 2015 by Sidharth Gupta, Rahul Chaudhary and Kadam Jeet Jain. It has 125 hotels in 25 cities across the country in its network.
Before launching this venture, Gupta and Chaudhary worked as vice-presidents at Flipkart-Myntra, leading several strategic initiatives for the group. They were colleagues at McKinsey & Company before that. Their co-founder and fellow alumnus from IIT Roorkee, Jain comes with nine years of experience in startups and until recently was the VP engineering for MyGola, an online travel company that was acquired by MakeMyTrip earlier this year.
Treebo last year raised $6 million in its Series A round of funding co-led by Matrix Partners India and SAIF Partners.
The company recently launched an app called ‘Bumblebee’ to help hotels manage their day-to-day operations. This app was a shift away from the conventional desktop-based systems. Earlier this year, Treebo launched a crowdsourced mystery audit programme called ‘Friends of Treebo’ wherein registered members of this community stay at Treebo properties as its unannounced representatives, and give feedback to the company on their experience to enable quick corrective actions where required.
Treebo plans to expand its footprint to at least 60 cities and quadruple its inventory to 12,000 rooms across 450 properties over the next 12 months. These cities will include a mix of business and leisure destinations. The company also plans to launch new brand extensions along the way, including a mid-scale brand and a leisure brand, while maintaining its core proposition of value-for-money across all these brands, it said on Friday.
Treebo offers accommodation to travelers in the Rs 1,000-3,000 price range. It competes with at least half a dozen such online branded budget hotels aggregators including Delhi-based Oravel Stays Pvt Ltd, the operator of OYORooms.com, as well as Zo Rooms and ZiP Rooms.
Investec India was the exclusive financial adviser to the company for this fundraise.
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