Startup of travel activities KKday lands investment of Alibaba and Line – TechCrunch



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Taiwan's KKday, a startup in the burgeoning competitive travel business market, has secured an undisclosed round of financing that adds two strategic investors to its business: Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba and the Japanese chat application company Line.

Kday was founded in 2015 to help people traveling abroad to find and book activities, from tours to tourist attractions, transportation, museums and more. The company said it offers more than 20,000 "unique experiences" in more than 500 cities in 80 countries. There is a lot of potential to enter, it seems, with analyst Phocuswright predicting that the travel and travel market will grow by a third, reaching $ 183 billion by 2020.

Unlike Hong Kong's regional rival Klook, which is valued at more than $ 1 billion and has ventured in Europe and the US, KKday is focused on Asian markets only.

We wrote about the startup in January, when it raised a $ 10.5 million round led by Japanese travel operator HIS, and this new round of B series funding is led by Alibaba's, the Taiwan fund and to Line Ventures. app.

KKday CEO Ming Chen told TechCrunch in an interview that the two will help KKday with their efforts in China and Japan. Initially, Alibaba made an investment in July. This new deal represents a follow-up and you'll see more emphasis on the KKday store at Alibaba's Fliggy travel shop in China. Curiously, the Alibaba fund also invested in another Taiwan-based activity service, FunNow.

Likewise, KKday will double to Japan, where Chen said the company has seen a "great growth" thanks, in large part, to its relationship with H.I.S. – a 38-year-old company with offices in 150 cities and $ 5.5 billion in annual sales. Chen, who believes that KKday is already Japan's largest travel booking platform, said that Line will present a travel account dedicated to the KKday service to allow Line users to book activities and share details with friends without leaving the application. posts.

Chen and KKday CMO Yuki Huang explained that the company is always open to strategic investments where it believes it can find business value.

"We are very focused on looking for strategic investors and not just money," Huang said.

Others in the round announced today include existing investors CDIB Capital of Hong Kong and Monk's Hill Ventures in Southeast Asia. That, coupled with Alibaba in China / Taiwan and H.I.S and Line in Japan, gives KKday a balanced investor base to support its business in these regions, Huang added.

The main rival of KKday is Klook and a Taiwanese competitor is FunDay, but a plethora of companies have emerged to offer similar services in other parts of the world. These include Peek in the US, Culture Trip, GetYourGuide, Headout and WithLocals. Still, KKday is sticking to its focus on Asia for now, according to Chen and Huang.

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