[The F-word] Travel tech startup Headout raises $10 M series A funding led by Nexus and Version One
Headout, the mobile-first marketplace that helps travellers access curated local experiences at any location, has raised Series A funding of $10 million. The round was led by existing investors Nexus Venture Partners and Version One Ventures.
Headout had previously raised funding of $2.2 million. With this fundraise, the amount touches $12.2 million. Since the beginning of this year, Headout has been beta-testing branded experiences to standardise and modernise travel experiences.
The team has partnered with the likes of Google Trips, Handy, the Wall Street Journal and other lifestyle brands. Founded in 2014 by Varun Khona, Suren Sultania, and Vikram Jit Singh, Headout focuses on evolving the way people experience the world by connecting them with local activities around them at the push of a button.
Headquartered in the US, the company has offices in New York, London, Dubai, Bengaluru, and Berlin. Varun Khona, Headout Co-founder and CEO, says,
“From day one, our ambition has been to help people discover the lively beat of our cities and connect them with the cultural revolution we’re witnessing and the explosion of experiential events and fascinating activities around us. Our focus is on understanding the city and going deep in a category rather than spreading ourselves thin across the globe.”
The team claims to have grown 8x in the last 12 months, and also claims to be profitable. Headout focuses on the last-minute segment for spontaneous millennials and travellers looking for in-destination experiences, and the majority of their reservations are for the same day.
Varun adds they are evolving the way people discover the world around them in three taps and currently serve 15 cities across three continents. Over the next 18 months, the service will expand from its current base of 20 cities to 100 cities across North America, Europe and Asia-Pacific.
Until this year, Headout was available to users only in English, but the company has now launched services in French, German and Spanish in select markets and is on course to have all its experiences available in 12 languages by the end of 2019.
Suren Sultania, Co-Founder & COO, said, “We’ve seen tremendous growth over the past year while improving our unit economics and capital efficiency. As a last minute marketplace, we’ve helped customers save an average of 18 percent on their reservations with Headout, thereby making these experiences both accessible and affordable.”
Headout aims to be a global leader for mobile-first in-destination experiences, and will invest aggressively in its inventory and data systems and branded experiences to enable digitisation and standardisation of last-minute experiences.
The team believes this will help bring the massive $185 billion in-destination services market from offline to online.
“We are thrilled to be partners in the journey of building the delightful ‘headout experience’, that today's mobile users deserve for discovering and experiencing cities around the world,” says Jishnu Bhattacharya, General Partner at Nexus Venture Partners.