Easol pockets $ 25 million as Tiger Global bets on “Shopify for experiences”


Easol, an e-commerce platform for companies selling experiences, just raised $ 25 million in a Series A round led by Tiger Global.

It is the 29th European startup that the American venture capital giant is supporting this year, after 12 months of aggressive investment in the tech talent of the region – but the former has mainly focused on live and in-person events and travel.

The increase is a further indication of VC’s growing confidence in the event and travel industries, and Easol is the latest startup to join the well-funded party investors are throwing for the sectors.

Last month, the start of data on the hotel industry OTA Insights bagged $ 80 million, Düsseldorf based event ticketing company Vivenu raised $ 50 million and Feast It event platform received 5 million euros.

For Easol’s part, this round is his second of the year – after a $ 4.5 million hike in March – and it wasn’t a tough sell to VCs in the current climate, the founder said. and CEO Ben Simpson. “[Events and travel] are huge markets and we’ve grown at an incredible rate so there’s been a lot of investor interest, ”he told Sifted.

Since its tour de table in 2018, Easol claims that its customer base has increased by nearly 1000%

Easol is a one-stop-shop platform for experienced businesses that allows them to build a website, sell events and travel packages, and manage clients. The startup works with companies around the world, from yoga retreats in Africa to festivals in the jungle of Costa Rica.

Since closing its seed cycle in 2018, the company says its customer base has grown by almost 1000% and is expected to triple that growth in 2022; the increase of $ 25 million will be used to invest heavily in the development of its product and the expansion of its team.

Easol plays the game for the long haul, and no matter what happens in the near future, Simpson believes the travel and events industries will grow stronger in the years to come. The desire of consumers to spend money on experiences is going nowhere and “will increase exponentially because of what has happened,” he says. “Our point of view has always been firm on this and not on short-term victories.”

But that doesn’t mean rapid scale-up isn’t on the agenda – and if there’s one thing we’ve learned from last year in European venture capital, it’s is that startups can scale mega-towers and hit insane valuations in no time.

Simpson is shy about future increases – as you should be when running a business that revolves around in-person events during the Covid era – but tells Sifted that pushing for more money for the warchest over the next 12 months is “very possible”.

Kai Nicol-Schwarz is a journalist at Sifted. It covers health tech and community journalism, and tweets from @NicolSchwarzK

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