Travel Curious has announced its Chairperson alongside a new brand identity and CSR commitment. The technology-led tours and activities startup also unveiled its intention to secure its Series A funding.
Travel Curious’ rebrand better encapsulates the essence of its cultural private tours and bespoke experiences, and its commitment to measuring its impact on people and the planet. The new Travel Curious brand leads with a stylised ‘C’ map pin and the tagline #HereToExplore, encompassing its forward-thinking energy and brand focus: being curious, creative, and modern.
In preparation for wider global growth, ETOA chairman and former JacTravel CEO, Mario Bodini has been named Chairperson of Travel Curious’ Board of Directors. His appointment gives the brand greater impetus as it sets its sights on raising between $5m – $7m in Series A financing to scale its operations to deliver instantly bookable tours and activities as a service worldwide.
The vertically integrated tours and activities provider – which curates and sells its own branded and white-labeled tours – has so far created a portfolio of 600+ tours in 70+ cities worldwide.
Commenting on the future of Travel Curious, Bodini said: “We’ve seen growth and investment in the tours and activities sector for a couple of years now, but predominantly in marketplaces. Travel Curious is a great challenger company reinvigorating the private tours market to create, operate and distribute quality immersive experiences on a free sale basis. It really expands the offer for traditional travel agents, travel suppliers and hospitality partners looking to provide complete travel experiences while benefiting from additional revenue. The fact that Travel Curious’ owns all of their own tours really appealed to me and I’m delighted to be working with such a strong and dynamic team.”
“It’s an honour to have Mario chairing our board, his long and illustrious career in travel, particularly his exceptional leadership at JacTravel, speaks for itself,” said Amir Azulay, co-founder and CEO of Travel Curious. “His experience, commercial acumen and industry connections at the very highest levels will enable Travel Curious to move forward with focus and precision at this very important stage as we prepare to grow and scale the company.
Initially a self-funded business, the company has undertaken three rounds of investment since 2018, securing US$1.6m from independent investors. Travel Curious has spent the last two years developing its distribution with travel suppliers, securing over 60 industry partnerships including leading travel brands TUI Musement, Marriott Hotels, Preferred Hotels & Resorts, and Small Leading Hotels of the World.
During the first lockdown the service provider diversified into Virtual Tours. Hosted by Travel Curious handpicked guides, the tours inspire the imagination of participants who have been unable to travel.
“We have huge plans for Travel Curious to become the world’s leading tours and activities service provider to traditional travel and hospitality companies,” continued Azulay. “We have a deep passion for immersive, cultural travel experiences, offering something authentic yet instantly bookable. Our proprietary booking and distribution technology together with our highly experienced network of guides and exceptional partners, allow us to offer their customers a new style of travelling with our private tours and the way we sell them. Investors are not only buying into a growing global brand, but one which is ethical and sustainable.”
Travel Curious has committed to balance profit and purpose. It is in the process of certifying as a B-corp company, it aims to measure its company carbon footprint as well as that of each individual tour or activity and aims to concretely remove carbon from the atmosphere for every step taken on a tour. The company has also put strong emphasis on selecting local tour guides and partners who align with its social mission and can ensure that its tours and activities have a positive impact on the local communities visited.
Travel Curious creates memorable experiences and economic opportunities for individuals and communities, ultimately increasing the flow of capital to local enterprises.