Taiwanese travel startup AsiaYo raises $7m from Alibaba fund, Delta Capital, others

Taiwan-based tourism startup AsiaYo, operated by Asia Travel Technology Co., Ltd. has raised a latest funding round of over NT$200 million (about $7 million) from a clutch of investors including Alibaba Taiwan Entrepreneurs Fund.

The Series B round also saw participation from China Development and Innovation Acceleration Co., Ltd., Da Ying Management Consulting Co., Ltd., and Delta Capital.

AsiaYo, which currently has presence in Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Thailand, will use a new round of funding for overseas market expansion, product development and talent recruitment. The company has plans to launch operations in Singapore and Malaysia among other places in the first quarter of 2019, according to an official statement.

Founded in 2014, AsiaYo claims to be Taiwan’s largest special accommodation booking platform managing over 60,000 hotels in 60 cities and 300,000 members. The number of employees has increased from four persons initially to more than 100 people now.

It also has over 50 partners globally, which has led to the company’s orders from the overseas market to exceed to 60 per cent of the total.

With ambitions of becoming the best travel platform for cross-regional and cross-language in the continent, AsiaYo also announced a new brand positioning today. It showcased its travel technology business model, covering B2C and B2B2C, and working with multinational travel partners to create “Asia’s best travel platform”. It further said it has completed three language interfaces in Chinese, English and Korean.

Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund was launched by Alibaba Group in 2015 with a fund size of HK$1 billion dedicated for Hong Kong and NT$10 billion for Taiwan.

Last month, another Taiwan-based tourism platform KKday raised an undisclosed investment form Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund, a non-profit arm of Alibaba Group, that supports Hong Kong and Taiwan-based younger generation entrepreneurs with capital and strategic investment.

The Series B+ round was co-led by LINE Ventures, the venture arm of Naver-backed LINE Corporation, with participation from existing investors including CDIB Capital and Monk’s Hill Ventures.

The latest financing comes two months after KKday reportedly raised an undisclosed sum from Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund in July. It had earlier raised $10.5 million in a Series B led by Japanese travel operator HIS this February.

Subsequently, in August this year, Taiwan-based instant booking app for leisure activities FunNow raised $5 million in a Series A round led by the Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund for its expansion in Southeast Asia and Japan.

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Online travel startup KKday raises financing from Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund

Taiwan’s instant booking app FunNow secures $5m Series A