Many digital travel companies are trying to get rid of the travel agency, but CloudArena thinks there’s still room for the accommodation agents of old. The company got $1.5 million in its first round of funding today for its management software.
Aslanoba Capital led the round, with seed-round investor 212 Capital Partners participating.
CloudArena creates HotelRunner, a management system for hotels and other travel-oriented businesses to help them organize sales and digital marketing — something hotels do not seem to be very good at. Instead, companies like Travelocity, Orbitz, and Hipmunk take over, marketing to their massive userbases and circumventing the travel agency little guy as well as the hotel brands themselves.
The company claims that those customers who use its digital management services see their online reservation increase “sevenfold.” It says the software is used by 1,250 travel industry properties, though that might not include separate companies, just different brands or locations within those companies.
It hopes to use the funding to work on the product. The company also plans to hire more employees and potentially make some acquisitions.
CloudArena is based in Istanbul and was founded in 2011.