London-based Top10.com has raised $8 million (£4.8 million) of venture capital to fund investment in new engineering hires and European expansion.
The business evaluates hotel data points to create a curated list of the top ten hotels for customers in any destination around the world. Its platform then plugs in to services such as Booking.com and LateRooms to provide the cheapest price.
Founded back in 2011, the site initially recommended music, entertainment and travel options. However, the founding team of Tom Leathes, Harry Jones and Alex Buttle then decided to focus on travel and hotels.
The $8 million of new funding means that Top10.com has now raised $12.5 million. A Series A round worth $3.5 million in July 2011 was topped up by $1 million in the summer of 2013.
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Speaking to GrowthBusiness, Leathes, co-founder and CEO of Top10.com, says that the main differentiator the start-up has is that while other sites provide endless choices which are then filtered down, Top10.com has done the work for the consumer by providing the best ten.
‘It’s easier to digest, and we’re also looking at what we think is more relevant information – such as Foursquare check-ins and social media conversations.’
Top10.com is now generating $1 million per month of hotel bookings and has built its offering to be used on mobile and tablets, where half of its traffic is derived from.
‘Our focus on mobile means customers get a great experience no matter what device they’re using.’
Daniel Waterhouse, partner at Balderton Capital, comments, ‘We love investing in businesses where complex technical challenges are tackled behind the scenes, whilst leaving customers with a simple and satisfying experience, both online and on mobile, which leads to almost effortless transactions. Tom and the team are an exceptional set of repeat entrepreneurs.
Having built internet businesses since leaving school some eight years ago, Leathes, Jones and Buttle are now onto their third venture together, with the two previous (in the office rental and broadband comparison sectors) both exited.
Waterhouse, whose lead role in the backing of Top10.com is his first since joining Balderton Capital in October 2013 from Wellington Partners, will now be taking a board seat.