Travel startup Mygola has raised USD 1.5 Mn in Series A funding led by Helion Venture Partners, along-with participation of existing investor Blumberg Capital. This funding round takes the total funds raised by Mygola to USD 2.5 Mn, earlier 500Startups and Blumberg Capital has invested USD 1 Mn in the company.
With the funding, Ashish Gupta from Helion Venture Partners has joined the board of Mygola.
Launched 3 years back by Anshuman Bapna, Mygola helps travelers to compress the 6 weeks of planning a trip itinerary into 15 minutes.
The startup says that it found that a number of travelers copy trips from articles in the NYTimes, or from blogs and even from tour operator websites. So to make the process simple, it aggregates all such itineraries under one roof and makes recommendations on what is feasible, commonly traveled circuits, and must-see places using a combination of data mining, patent-pending algorithms, and freelance curators.
To plan the trip, users need to enter the destination and duration of their trip. On entering these, the website provides them with a list of itineraries to select from. Each itinerary provides the travelers with the recommendations of places which they can travel to, in their selected destination.
Based on these selections, the website also helps them in creating a daily plan by recommending them nearby places.
To make things look more appealing, its algorithms go out and search creative-commons image databases like Flickr and Panoramio for pictures pictures to go along with the itinerary.
The latest funding round will be used by the company to expand its presence in US from where it gets 25-30% of its revenue. Further the funds will be used by Mygola for experimenting with various marketing channels, build a better mobile experience and to power growth in general marketing channels.
As per the company 2 Mn travellers have planned their trips using its platform which covers more than 20,000 destinations worldwide.
Previously, Mygola used to operate as a pay-what-you-want online travel concierge, where users could ask for travel advice. Users had an option to not to pay if they didn’t get a response in 24 hours, but in case they paid a minimum of USD 1, they could ask a second question, and so on. The company has plans to reintroduce the old business model in a new format within the next few months, reports Mint.
Mygola is based in US with engineering offices in Bangalore.
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