India-based online bus reservation service TicketGoose has raised its second round funding of $3 million from Indventure, a Chicago-based investor firm.
The company says the fund will be used to improve its technology, provide more value added services, enhance its 24/7 customer support, and expand geographically through marketing and promotional activities.
TicketGoose had previously raised $1million in 2012 from US-based angel investors, taking its total investment amount to $4 million.
One of the key differentiators of TicketGoose is its Hipmunk-style user interface. The site is designed to appeal visually and keep the text as minimal as possible.
Competitors of TicketGoose in India include redBus (sold to ibibo group), Travelyaari, and Abhibus.
The company has partnered with 700+ bus operators and 6,000 agents to cover 3,000 destinations, through 10,000 routes and 20,000 buses.
President and co-founder Karthi Easwaramoorthy says:
“The year 2013 has seen tremendous growth in the industry and has been an important year for TicketGoose. With further growth expected in the Industry, we hope to close the year with a turnover of around Rs. 100 crore ($20 million)”
TicketGoose was founded in 2007, now it has 130 employees with offices in Chennai, Bangalore and Hyderabad.
Tnooz spoke to Easwaramoorthy regarding the latest funding round:
Plan for the next 18 months?
In the next 18 months we would be investing time, effort and resources in bringing out the best customer experience. So far, bus booking aggregators like us solved the basic pain of booking the ticket at your hand. It is just a beginning, not an end. Earlier, customers had issues before and after booking tickets. Some of them started to live with it.
In order to improve best customer experience, we introduced 24/7 customer support, travel insurance and world class user interface. None of the players have user interface like we have.
In a nutshell, we would spruce up and enable technologies , acquire quality inventories and enhance customer service to bring the best customer experience. In another 18 months, we put customers at heart and centre to deliver.
Will TicketGoose venture into other hot segments like hotels, car rentals? or planning to stick to bus segment?
Bus market is huge and 95% of it is still untaped. Though TicketGoose is the industry leader in terms of customer support and user interface, still it is in a basic stage. We would concentrate in transforming bus operators who own buses and consumers who travel to never before seen experience. So we have a lot more to do in the bus industry for now.
NB:Bus image via Shutterstock.