TAIWANESE travel startup KKday has raised US$75 million in Series C funding to build its new booking management platform and expand globally.
Led by Cool Japan Fund and Taiwan's National Development Fund, the round also saw participation from existing investors, including Monk's Hill Ventures and MindWorks Capital.
KKday's new booking management platform Rezio is targeted towards tour operators and activity providers, and was piloted in Taiwan and Japan amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
The platform provides a suite of services including a setup for an online store, real-time inventory management across different booking channels, customised vouchers for various booking scenarios, and integration with local payment gateways, said KKday, adding that this can help reduce operational costs and increase efficiencies for these tour operators.
All features can also be accessed on any mobile device, something that allows travel and experience providers to manage bookings on the go, it said.
"Real-time inventory across a provider's multiple channels became critical given increased safety measures and crowd limitations during Covid-19," KKday noted in its press statement on Tuesday.
In just six months, over 300 providers have adopted the platform across Taiwan and Japan. These providers range from small-scale travel and activity providers, to large-scale operators such as HIS International, one of the largest online travel agencies in Japan.
KKday also has plans to build out more functionalities and roll out the platform to tour operators and activity providers in Asia. It will provide access to the Rezio platform to any provider for six months without any subscription fees, the startup said.
KKday will also continue to expand its team and operations in Japan, Korea, and South-east Asia.
Since May 2020, the company has been seeing a surge in demand for local experiences with the opening up of domestic travel in certain markets, including Japan, Taiwan, and Hong Kong, it said.
The startup had put its senior management on unpaid leave, and gave other staff the option of taking unpaid leave, according to reports in The Business Times in March. At that time, the startup had also implemented a headcount freeze across all departments.
"The pandemic has significantly impacted the travel industry in Asia. We are grateful for our investors who continue to believe in us...particularly during this time," said Chen Ming-ming, founder and chief executive of KKday.
Said Lim Kuo-Yi, co-founder and managing partner of Monk's Hill Ventures: "We expect traveller demand to bounce back quickly when leisure travel opens up again. The human desire to travel, experience and connect is fundamental. We have high conviction in KKday's leadership team and believe the company is primed to seize the immense opportunity ahead of us."