Multi-modal travel booking platform Omio raises $100 million

Berlin-based travel firm eyes organic growth and acquisitions

European multi-modal travel specialist Omio has raised $100 million in new investment from existing and new backers.

The funding, which will drive organic growth and provide a pot of money for M&A activity, comes from Temasek, Kinnevik, Goldman Sachs Asset Management, NEA and Kleiner Perkins. 

The firm said it was allow it “to pursue its vision of unifying global transport with end to end consumer experiences”.

The Berlin-based booking platform said it will strengthen its “unique product and service offering” including all transport options like rail, bus, flights, ferries and car rental, and sharing.

It also plans to diversify across 37 countries in Europe and Northern America under the Omio brand in combination with planning engine Rome2Rio, which offers search and discovery of transport to and from more than 10 million locations worldwide.

Naren Shaam, founder and chief executive of Omio, said: “Travel is an eternal need and I have no doubt in the comeback of the industry.

“We have seen a very promising recovery of our business over the past weeks, based on the unique strength of our product which includes all modes of transport across multiple markets.

“Especially in Germany and France, we are already above 50 percent of our pre-Covid-19 bookings despite marginal marketing spend.

“However, consumer expectations are changing and the industry will need to evolve to new standards and provide new products with a strong focus on sustainability. We will use the fresh capital to drive this change.”

Jan Kemper, managing director and chief financial officer of Omio, said:  “When the COVID-19 crisis hit the travel industry, our team made an incredible effort to switch from growth mode into a manage-to-cash organization within weeks.

“At the same time we started discussions with existing and selected new investors to make sure that we can ramp up our financial head-room for the coming years.

“Our strong network of financial partners has been key to our ability to manage through this challenging period and will help us quickly return into growth mode.

“The funding underlines our investors’ confidence in our strategy and the long term potential of our diversified, asset-light business model.”

Omio says it has already experienced a stronger bounce-back in travel bookings than expected.

It claims this has been driven by a “clear change in consumer behaviour towards more ground transportation, combined with an accelerating shift towards app usage as consumers prefer to avoid kiosks and long queues”.

Omio said it responded to this shift in demand by improving and expanding its services, including an Open Travel Index (OTI) to help travellers understand where they can travel to within Europe and North America.