Business Startups Venture

GetYourGuide Raises $484M, Hires Ex-Instagram Product Head

Summer’s coming up and families everywhere have been busy planning vacations. That’s where companies like Berlin-based GetYourGuide come in.

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The ten-year-old travel activity platform just got a massive $484 million capital infusion to continue to help people book tours and activities on trips. The SoftBank Vision Fund, which has been busy lately, led the round. Other investors included Temasek, Lakestar, Korelya Capital, Heartcore Capital (formerly Sunstone Capital), and Swisscanto Invest by Zürcher Kantonalbank.

As part of the financing, Ted Fike, Partner at SoftBank Investment Advisers, is joining GetYourGuide’s board.

The round brings GetYourGuide’s total venture raised to over $650 million, according to its Crunchbase profile. In a blog, the company described itself as “the new unicorn on the block” but didn’t elaborate on its valuation.

GetYourGuide won’t give out revenue numbers but said it recently reached the milestone of having sold 25 million tickets. Will Gluckin, a company spokesperson, told me the company sold 10 million tickets in 2018 and that was “more than double” what it had sold the previous year. “We expect that trajectory to continue and speed up,” he said.

GetYourGuide is planning to use its new funding to “broaden its global inventory of experiences, deepening the capabilities of its platform to enhance the discovery and booking experience for users, and expanding and diversifying its marketing channels to reach millions of new travelers around the world.”

Specifically, GetYourGuide is planning to hire like crazy. Gluckin also told me that the company has already hired 100 people since the start of the year, bringing its headcount to 500. The company plans to have 800 employees by year’s end, he said. GetYourGuide has a presence in every continent except Antarctica, with 16 offices outside of its Berlin headquarters in cities such as Cape Town, Sydney and San Francisco. With the funding, GetYourGuide has already made a couple of C-level hires, including tapping Ameet Ranadive, who most recently led the product team at Instagram, to serve as its first chief product officer.

Indeed, the potential for what GetYourGuide is doing is huge. One study predicted that the tours and activities market will reach $183 billion by 2020.

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias

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