Barcelona-based Amenitiz, which sells software-as-a-service to streamline the management of independent hotels and B&Bs, which it dubbed “Shopify for Hotels,” has just months after announcing $7.5 million in seed capital -Dollar completed a $30 million Series A.
The latest round is led by VC firm Eight Roads, which also includes Chalfen Ventures and existing investors Point-Nine, Backed and Otium Capital.
The 2018-founded SaaS maker isn’t disclosing its valuation for the increase, but says it has scaled its Property Management System (PMS) SaaS package to over 4,000 properties in 37 countries — up from 3,000 last November.
The fully integrated software platform not only enables day-to-day operations such as guest management, communication and billing – including Amenitiz’s own branded payment module – but also includes a website builder and channel manager designed to support independent hotels and guests helps homes to stay up to date on multiple third-party platforms where their property can be advertised (e.g. booking.com, Expedia, etc.).
It also connects customers to a marketplace for third-party software tools to meet additional needs they may have.
The new funding will be used to expand into more European markets and launch more products on its platforms – along with further scaling the size of Amenitiz’s team, with plans to grow from 150 to around 350 employees by the end of this year.
Alexandre Guinefolleau, CEO of Amenitiz, told TechCrunch, “When we raised our seed round with Point-Nine, we did so with very specific goals. We wanted to build our internationalization playbook with the opening of Spain and Italy, launch AmenitizPay to simplify the way our hotels manage payments, and start recruiting strong leadership while scaling the team (which we expect from 30 to 150 employees in 2021).
“After all those boxes were ticked and we saw strong investor interest, we decided now would be a good time to accelerate, start another round and continue to scale in Europe.”
Amenitiz already has a few customers for its SaaS outside of the region, but France was its first focus market and will continue to direct its resources towards expansion in Europe for now.
It notes that there are about 700,000 hotels, bed and breakfasts and vacation rentals in the region, 80% of which are standalone properties with 50 rooms or less — meaning they fall into the standalone segment Amenitiz is targeting.
“France was our original market (and the only one we focused on for the first three years). Since then we have seen a fantastic response from Italy and Spain, which we rolled out in 2021 with similar acquisition metrics and initial growth,” says Guinefolleau. “The plan is to focus on Europe for now as it is one of the largest tourism markets in the world but to expand rapidly to new continents in the coming years (US and LatAm most likely as first expansion).”
According to Guinefolleau, with the new funding, Amenitiz is aiming to launch in the UK, Ireland, Portugal, Germany and “potentially” Greece – which together with existing markets makes up 90% of Europe’s tourism market.
On the product development front, he says they will be adding more features that will help make hoteliers’ processes “quicker and smoother.”
“Most notable, however, will be our revenue management system, which will allow hoteliers to automate their pricing strategy based on their historical occupancy and market data,” he adds.
Amenitiz SaaS essentially replaces the functionality of 3-4 different vendors for target indie hoteliers – and centralizes all of these tools on a single platform to streamline management efforts.
“In Europe, most of our competitive market is made up of very local, well-established players who are typically country or even region specific in some cases,” says Guinefolleau. “In France that would be Eviivo, Vega (PMS), MisterB
“Our biggest competitor globally would be Cloudbeds, which focuses on the US and Latin America but offers a similar range of products.”
Commenting on the Serie A pay rise, Lucile Cornet, a partner at Eight Roads and now also a board member of Amenitiz, said in a statement: “Amenitiz has shown impressive momentum despite the pandemic. This shows how a 10x better product that is intuitive and easy to use can quickly achieve market adaptation in a sector that has seen very little innovation in recent decades. We look forward to working with Alex, Emma and Fred.”