The travel market is huge in the United States, estimated to be worth $315 billion back in 2015, half of which was the responsibility of online bookings, for a total of 146 million travelers. Now diving deep is this market will be FinalPrice, an app reaching the country today – and with a $4 million investment in its quiver.
This booking app promises to give users the best possible prices on over 800 airlines, about 1 million hotels and the world’s top 40 car rental companies. It works with a yearly fee ($99), which is a quite uncommon business model, but one that has already caught the eye of investors.
The aforementioned $4 million were put together by Almaz Capital and Sistema VC, two well-known funding entities in the business, with successful investments. Almaz Capital went, among others, for Plesk, Qik and Yandex, while Sistema VC put money on MEL Science, Vision Labs, Luden.io, and more.
Pavel Bogdanov, Almaz Capital General Partner (who will join the FinalPrice board of directors), shared his contentment on FinalPrice’s decision to go for the US market:
“We are glad that FinalPrice founding team, having built largest online travel businesses in Eastern Europe, set its sights on the US market and turned to Almaz Capital for support.”
Alexey Katkov, president of Sistema VC, explained why investing on this app made sense for his VC:
“This year we are expanding geography of our investments and mostly focusing on deep tech companies. So FinalPrice is a three-in-one target for us: this is the US project that has its own deep technologies and disrupts traditional travel market via perspective subscription business model”.
The founder of FinalPrice, Peter Kutis, explained how his company is different:
“The majority of the U.S. market is moving to a subscription plan, from Netflix and Spotify to Amazon and dry cleaning. We want to become the Amazon Prime of travel. With the old-school approach, online travel agencies utilize a model where competition is brutal and price is the only factor.
A subscription approach to travel offers better prices and better loyalty. No more ‘spend more to save more,’ last minutes deals, or excluded taxes. You do not have to be ‘Genius’ traveler to get fair prices. All the commissions we get from the suppliers are returned to customers as a discount or cashback. You get what we get. Period.”
FinalPrice has several smart algorithms and artificial intelligence in place, in order to offer users a personalized experience and also go through the hotel possibilities in the best possible way, for improved results. All this contributes to ultimately save the users some money, as shown by the numbers: $10,000 spent travelling with this app mean around $2,500 in savings, which is a pretty good reason to convince anyone to use FinalPrice.