Sonu Sood launches B2B travel tech platform Travel Union for rural entrepreneurs
Bollywood actor and philanthropist Sonu Sood has launched a B2B travel technology platform, Travel Union, for rural entrepreneurs.
The platform will give access to all trains operating in India through IRCTC, over 500 domestic and international flights, over 10,000 bus operators, and more than 10 lakh hotels to its members and consumers, the company said in a statement.
Sood said that during the lockdowns, he had a first-hand experience of the challenges that rural Indians face when it comes to travel, as well as the struggles of small business owners.
"The lack of tailored offerings catering to the needs of Bharat and addressing digital needs of rural citizens stayed with me. In fact, currently, rural consumers have no option to pre-plan their travel and have to run to multiple operators for different kinds of travel needs," he shared.
Actor Sonu Sood
"I envisioned Travel Union so that we can remove all barriers to travel and give an entrepreneurial opportunity to anyone in the nation who wants to start a career in the travel industry," he said. Sood is the second-largest shareholder in the company.
He added that Travel Union can be an additional source of income for existing rural entrepreneurs or a building block for aspiring ones.
"While I have already taken steps to offer employment opportunities to Indian youth, Travel Union furthers my dream of bringing self-employment opportunities to the hinterlands of India," Sood said.
According to the statement, Travel Union aggregates all available price options for a particular offering and shows Travel Union members the lowest prices they can offer their customers.
It also allows for online cancellations and refunds, eliminating the long wait customers usually have to endure.
"The onboarding of Travel Union members will require zero investment from them, and there is no recurring cost post onboarding either, lowering the barrier of entry. Also, it offers the lowest IRCTC agent ID purchase cost.
"Moreover, this cost gets refunded over a period of time upon successful transactions, making this ID effectively free, which is an industry-first opportunity available only to Travel Union members," the statement said.