Major Shake-up for Short-term Rentals ⚡︎

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Let’s go directly to our curation of the top news in innovation, trends, and startups for the week:

  • A hiccup for short term rental. Barcelona plans to ban all short-term rentals for tourists by late 2028 to address the housing shortage and rising rental prices. Mayor Jaume Collboni says this decision was made to increase affordable housing and curb illegal rentals. Starting November 2028, no new licenses will be issued and existing ones will be revoked, impacting over 10,000 properties, significantly affecting the travel industry. Ouch.
  • Better listing positions. Belgium-based OTA ranking management platform Otamiser raised $3 million in its initial funding round led by Pitchdrive VC. The funds will support Otamiser’s expansion to 1,000 hotels and 100,000 short-term rentals worldwide. By optimizing OTA rankings and pricing, Otamiser boosts occupancy rates by 11% and profits by 24%. This significantly enhances revenue and competitiveness by ensuring properties maximize their visibility and booking potential on major platforms.
  • Fair fares for all. AI-driven market engine for airlines Fetcherr closed a $90 million Series B funding round. They help airlines like Virgin Atlantic and Azul set perfect prices to boost revenue by optimizing fare structures based on market data. This new cash will also fuel their expansion beyond the travel industry.
  • Exploring market needs and rates. Lighthouse, the company that focuses on helping hotels and short-term rentals analyze market demand and rates, just bought Berlin-based HQ Revenue. Lighthouse, previously known as OTA Insight, has raised over $100M and serves 65,000 hoteliers globally. By bringing in top-notch teams, Lighthouse wants to boost their tech and use data to optimize hotel and rental revenue and performance.
  • Where investments are flowing. Powered by Lufthansa Innovation Hub, TNMT just published their latest “Travel and Mobility Sector Attractiveness Report”. It provides a clear overview of major priorities and investment strategies from 2018 to 2023 across aviation, ground transport, hospitality, and online travel. The research shows interesting insights on where investments went and which startups gained funding.
  • Bedbugs party in Paris. Remember a few months ago when everyone was freaking out about bedbugs in Paris? Well, there’s a startup fighting back, and they just scored €4M to expand their chemical-free bedbug safety tech. Valpas’ cool bed legs keep rooms bedbug-free, making guests super happy. With over 300 hotel partners, they’re taking on a huge industry problem and aiming for a future with no bedbugs and no pesticides in hospitality
  • Transforming railway operations. In their latest podcast episode, EU-Startups chats with Andreas Loy, Co-founder and CEO of KONUX, a German AI scale-up revolutionizing railway operations with predictive maintenance and timetable optimization. KONUX has raised $130M and expanded to ten European countries. This episode has some good insights on improving rail travel reliability and efficiency.