We’ve been keeping busy as we warm up for this year’s FutureTravel Summit. Exciting times are ahead, and we’re genuinely thrilled about what’s in store: we’ve secured a ✨wonderful venue✨ that we think you’ll love, and we’ve already confirmed some incredible speakers. Believe us when we say amazing things are on the horizon! Keep your eyes peeled because speaker applications will open shortly – so stay tuned! But for today, let’s dive into this week’s roundup, highlighting the latest in travel industry innovation, trends, and fascinating startups.
- Tour leaflets, reinvented. By providing a user-friendly platform and leveraging artificial intelligence, Turneo will change how tours and activities are booked, bringing convenience and efficiency to the sector. The Croatian startup has secured €800,000 in pre-seed funding for its B2B platform, allowing accommodation establishments to offer guests various services in one place, streamlining the booking process. With the global market for excursions and experiences valued at €250 billion, Turneo is set to tap into the growing demand for digital solutions on that front.
- Pop-up schools & talent upskilling. Mews has partnered with Saira Hospitality to revolutionize hospitality education and address staffing shortages. The partnership involves creating five new hospitality schools worldwide using Saira’s curriculum, starting with a school in London. Additionally, Saira’s curriculum will be available through the Mews University platform, providing digital life skill sessions to upskill global workforces. The collaboration aims to create a skilled workforce and make high-quality training more accessible to the industry. The way I see it, the commitment to education as a response to staffing challenges is a promising sign.
- Triple growth company. The Spanish Room007 has raised €7.5 million in a new funding round to fuel its European expansion plans. Currently operating 2,000 rooms across various cities, the hospitality company aims to triple its size by adding four assets in Rome, two in Madrid, and two in Lisbon. The funding will be allocated towards facilitating the expansion of the company.
- Sustainable bookings – but make it simple. Swiss startup Viatu has raised €906k in funding to expand its platform, simplifying the booking process for sustainable travel and adventures. Their platform offers a data-driven trip builder that allows users to book accommodations, experiences, and car rentals in one place. It ensures its offerings meet sustainable tourism criteria and encourages responsible travel practices while making trip planning faster, more transparent, and environmentally responsible. The funding will further develop the platform and enhance the user experience based on customer feedback.
- Building a powerhouse. Short-term rental platform Guesty has acquired StaySense, a provider of marketing and distribution solutions for property managers. This marks Guesty’s sixth acquisition over the past 2 years. StaySense offers software for marketing and distribution, helping hospitality managers compete with major listing sites and global brands. The acquisition strengthens Guesty’s position as a leading platform for vacation rental managers, deepening its connection with the US leisure market and diversifying its distribution strategies.
- Meet the city where life is just 15 minutes away. The world’s most renowned city is not only celebrated for its iconic landmarks, croissants, and vibrant culture but also for spearheading sustainable practices that will redefine tourism and travel. With a persistent commitment to environmental consciousness, Parisians have seamlessly integrated sustainability into their daily lives, revolutionizing mobility and urbanism. Under Mayor Anne Hidalgo’s leadership, Paris aims to become a 15-minute city, prioritizing the well-being of residents and tourists alike. We explored this initiative which promises a uniquely immersive (and sustainable!) experience, reshaping how visitors engage with the wonders of Paris.