Revinate is doing something interesting for the hospitality industry: it’s gathering up reviews from all over the web — Twitter, Foursquare, Facebook, places where we might not even know we’re writing a “review” — and letting hoteliers and retaurateurs sort and analyze the information in really useful ways.
The startup just took a great big Series A — $14.5 million, a notable figure amid the deluge of smaller first-round deals — from Benchmark Capital, which led the round, and Formation 8.*
The funding will be used to bring Revinate to more chains, corporate groups, hotels, and restaurants around the world; in fact, the company just started operations in Hong Kong, its first international market.
The startup previously reported a $500,000 seed or angel round to the SEC; this brings the startup’s total venture capital fundraising to $15 million.
“[Revinate founders] Jay Ashton and Marc Heyneker are terrific entrepreneurs, seizing the opportunity of cloud and social to bring unique insights to the hospitality industry, which thrives on customer engagement and word of mouth,” said Benchmark partner Peter Fenton in a statement on the funding.
“My partners and I have witnessed first-hand — through our involvement with Twitter, Instagram, Yelp, and Facebook — the power of social channels to directly connect brands and consumers. I look forward to building upon Revinate’s success as they continue to expand and scale.”
Currently, one of Revinate’s bigger clients is Wyndham Hotel Group, the world’s largest hospitality company, which chose Revinate’s software for use at all of its properties and by all its corporate staff around the world.
The startup will be getting a new office soon, too, in the remote but beautiful Presidio of San Francisco.
*We asked around the VentureBeat offices, and no one had actually heard of Formation 8. As we’ve learned, it’s a relatively new venture firm with a Palo Alto office and three international offices all around Asia, and it’s looking to make growth-stage investments. It counts Palantir Technologies co-founder Joe Lonsdale as a general partner; Palantir is known for its multibillion-dollar revenues and for its mysterious, opaque operations.
Other recent investments for Formation 8 include Backplane, the white-label social community startup, in February 2012. Other than that, the Internet knows very little about Formation 8. We’ll keep our ears to the ground; we love a good mystery around here.
Image based on photo from rangizz, Shutterstock