Category: Travel & Tourism – Travel Tech
Through the SBC Program we were able to launch a partnership with The Yomiuri Shimbun that promotes the Travello App to an expansive Japanese audience which were seeing the app for the first time.
Travello is a social network for travellers used in 180 countries. Whilst beginning as a consumer facing social app, Travello has grown to over 800,000+ users and has since evolved into a fully integrated enterprise platform. This was a result of extensive customer engagement and research, leading to a clear understanding of real pain-points that many travel companies were/are facing. Travello now provides a unique and innovative enterprise solution for travel companies, providing a platform for them to connect and communicate with their audience in a way never seen before.
Interview with Travello
What does Travello do?
Travello is a mobile travel app that provides a platform for travellers to connect and share travel experiences in-destination and also enables travellers to book and purchase tours and activities in-location and in real-time. Travello is used in over 180 countries around the world and is the most seamless way to connect and find great experiences whilst you are travelling.
How did you/the founders come up with the idea?
Travello was born from Ryan and my own travel experiences. We both have previously travelled extensively and we wanted to create a platform that enhanced ‘traveller to traveller’ and ‘traveller to experience’ connections on a seamless mobile app. Our company motto is to “Make Travel Better” and we feel Travello does this by bringing these connections online to a world class mobile travel app.
Could you tell us a bit about you and your team?
The Travello team is based in Brisbane, Australia and the entirety of our product has been created inhouse. We have a great tech team which has enabled us to produce a world-class product in a very efficient matter. Every Travello team member loves travel and we have 9 different nationalities represented among our team members! Having a great team whom all really love the concept in Travello is extremely beneficial.
Mark Cantoni, the COO & Co-Founder of Travello, grew up in far North Queensland, Australia but discovered a passion for travel early on. With a Bachelor of Surveying at the Queensland University of Technology, Mark went on to work on multiple large scale projects both in Australia and in the UK. Mark gathered valuable experience in managing survey and engineering teams whilst working on numerous large-scale construction projects and several Mining and Oil & Gas infrastructure projects in rural Queensland. Mark then decided to pursue a career in business and prior to Travello he started up his own Recruitment/Labour Hire company based in Brisbane, Queensland. Throughout Mark’s professional career, he also played semi-professional and professional Rugby League in Australia, France and the UK. One highlight of his was representing the USA in the 2013 Rugby League World Cup. Mark’s extensive experience and knowledge across multiple disciplines proves invaluable when driving Travello forward to be a world class travel tech company.
Ryan Hanly, the CEO and Co-Founder of Travello, has over 10 years experience in education and middle management, has provided not only a depth of knowledge in team and project management and educational pedagogy, but also a wealth of transferable skills, enabling various opportunities to prosper. 3 years experience in management rights and 4 years as owner of two Jetts fitness centres has led to a varied skillset in a range of industries. Over 15 years experience in property investment has also provided invaluable experience in the buying and selling of property and contract negotiation skills. All this experience went into creating Travello which has had multiple Appstore features, has been the no. 1 Travel app in 9 countries and has reached the top 5 in over 50 countries.
What are the other alternatives to Travello?
There are other social travel platforms and also other in-destination experience booking platforms. However, Travello is unique in that we combine the social travel element with the live experience booking functionality into the one platform. The Travello Rewards program is the first of its kind in the world. Travello rewards discovery by rewarding positive engagement and contributions to the platform with Rewards points that can be used to obtain substantial discounts on thousands of tours and activities around the globe. Our users can earn points in a multitude of ways and value of these points is always clearly visible for the user in-app. Such a unique and innovative Rewards program clearly sets Travello apart from our competitors and has been a huge driver in the growth of the platform in recent times.
Who is your target customer?
Our target customer is predominantly Free and Independent Travellers (FITs) and typically with a more youthful demographic. However, Travello is currently being used by travellers from all demographics and age groups and will continually grow to encompass all travellers.
How does your product make a difference to the industry?
Travello is completely unique in the travel industry – no other company combines community and commerce the way we do. Travello enhances the travel industry and travel experience by combining a social travel platform with live bookability of tens of thousands of experiences in real time.
What are the milestones for Travello?
- Going live in 2016 on both iOS and Android
- Three rounds of capital raising with most recently closing a $5 million round
- Evolving to also provide an in-destination platform to book live tours and activities
- Launching our B2B SaaS platform that connects travel companies with their customers in-destination
- Launch of the world-first Travello Rewards Program
- Partnership with the Queensland Government and Tourism and Events Queensland
- Now signing International Partnerships with large corporates who are looking to build new revenue streams in the travel vertical.
This year Travello will launch a fully localised application in 8 foreign languages. Using this, Travello will build on those partnerships in foreign markets to grow our global footprint.
Why did you start targeting Japan?
The Startupbootcamp Scale Osaka program provided the catalyst to start targeting the Japanese market. Japan is regarded as the third largest economy in the world and the opportunity to partner in Japan with such a wonderful company as The Yomiuri Shimbun was very attractive for us as a company. We see a massive opportunity in the Japanese inbound and outbound market and through partnerships, we see the potential for huge growth in Japan.