Hotailors has been around for about a year. It aims to help travel agencies access, compare and book hotels by bringing all the data including price, cancellation policy, descriptions and images.
The startup says this means agents no longer have to access the content of the various GDS and it also provides them with reporting capabilities.
Although the Poland-based company started as a B2C service, it quickly saw that B2B would be a better model.
What problem does your business solve?
Hotailors enables travel agencies to book hotels faster and smarter by enabling them with the power of metadata. Travel agencies today are always playing the catchup game with their clients who are always on the phone comparing rates with current market leading platforms such as booking.com or trivago.
Many agencies are losing clients and conversion rates and dwindling to new tech inspired cloud based services.
We are changing this for travel agencies, who can now stay one step ahead and have all the information necessary to convert lookers into bookers within minutes by providing their clients with real time valuable information without having to browse multiple sites or sources.
Names of founders, their management roles, and number of full-time paid staff?
There are three founders: Filip Bloch CEO, Maciej Stopierzyski CTO, Michal Szeksztello CFO. Hotailor currently employees five full time employees.
We have bootstrapped 80% of our product. Up till now, Hotailors has raised small angel investment less than 100K and 50K from ABC Accelerator in Slovenia with total investment of 150K and is currently in talks with VCs to raise the first round of capital after seed stage.
We take a small commission on every booking (3%-7%), through our SaaS offering. We offer the SaaS solution to travel agencies for free.
Why do you think the pain point you’re solving is painful enough that customers are willing to pay for your solution?
We already have paying customers. Our solution helps them work much faster even when they are mobile. They are able to have higher conversion and better information.
We offer them a solution that is comprehensive and not segmented where they can answer customer queries on the fly and the more an agent uses Hotailor the better the results are over time. Our algorithms are constantly learning the patterns of an agent.
We have already been accepted and been a part of ABC Accelerator in Slovenia. They have also offered us to move to Silicon valley. However, since we are a very young company and do not have significant hold on any market yet, we are focusing on our core markets in Europe right now.
In the future we will look into expanding to USA.
We also have mentors from Amadeus headquarters in central eastern Europe.
We are also working with MasterCard in the Czech Republic and more than 37 B2B hotel suppliers, 60+ agencies use the solution right now and are paying customers.
Moving to a B2B model was a sensible development in the infancy of this startup. It has just recently signed a contract with Mastercard in the Czech Republic to offer its business card holders access to the hotel booking service.
It also says it's talking Diners Club in the region.
On the positive side Hotailors can offer travel agencies a central point for hotel comparison and booking with all the information they need as well as post-booking reports and data.
This should save time, increase efficiency and help agents provide their clients with better control on spend.
However, there's quite a bit of competition in this space when you think of companies such as HRS, steps made already by intermediaries to improve hotel booking and initiatives such as booking.com for business and Travelport Rooms and More.
Hotailors will need to build scale in terms of hotel inventory and travel agencies signing up, as well as awareness quickly, to keep up.
The possibility of some funding on the horizon potentially Poland-based DaftCode, should help it on its way.