Travelguru Raises $15 Million From Sequoia Capital and Battery Ventures

Posted Nov 29, 2006

Today, India-based travel planning website, Travelguru has received $15 million in funding from Battery Ventures and Sequoia Capital India. This second round investment “is the largest investment in one single round in the consumer internet space in India yet.”

“The new round of investments will help us strengthen our reach through delivering retail experience to our consumer base as well as in making continued investments to maintain our high level of customer satisfaction and service,” stated Ashwin Damera, the Founder of Travelguru. “The second round of funding from Battery Ventures and Sequoia Capital reaffirms the growing confidence in Travelguru’s team and leadership position in the Indian travel and tourism industry” added Damera.

Earlier this year, Travelguru had received $10 million from Sequoia Capital India as a first round investment. This is Battery Ventures’ first investment in an Indian Internet company. “We are very happy to announce our first major investment in the consumer internet space in India with Travelguru. Given our experience in technology in general and consumer internet specifically, we selectively look for companies with a few key ingredients: companies that address large markets, have very strong leadership, and have shown they can deliver innovative offerings as well as execute on sales and marketing,” stated Mark Sherman, General Partner of Battery Ventures.

One of Travelguru’s competitors, is also working on raising a major investment. MakeMyTrip is expecting to receive $10-$12 million shortly.

Travelguru is similar to Travelocity and Expedia in the fact that it searches for discount prices on hotel accomodations, flights, etc. As an experienced user of MakeMyTrip, I was impressed by the ease of booking tickets within India by such websites. Through MakeMyTrip, I was able to find a one-way ticket from Bangalore to Delhi on premium airline, King Fisher for 3,000 rupees and normally the price of flying this airline on the same route is over 8,000 rupees. The current dollar-rupee conversion rate is 1 USD-44.54 INR. At this conversion rate, a total investment of $25 million will drastically improve Travelguru operations.