KKday raises US$75M Series C to meet the demand surge for local experiences as Asia’s travel market reopens
KKday, a leading online travel experiences platform in Asia, has announced the close of US$75 million in a Series C funding round, led by Cool Japan Fund and National Development Fund.
Existing investors, including Monk’s Hill Ventures and MindWorks Capital, also participated.
The new funding will be used by the Taipei-headquartered firm to continue to expand in Asia and globally and to build out Rezio, an all-in-one booking management platform for travel operators and activity providers, globally.
KKday will also continue to expand its team and operations in Japan, Korea, and Southeast Asia.
Founded in 2014, KKday aims to provide users with “seamless access to endless lifestyle experiences” — from local theme parks and top restaurants to staycations and multi-day hiking trips.
Currently, it offers more than 30,000 unique experiences in over 550 cities and 92 countries, and claims to have five million users and 10 offices across Asia.
Since May 2020, the company has been seeing a surge in demand for local experiences with the opening up of domestic travel in certain markets, including Japan, Taiwan, and Hong Kong.
Rezio provides a suite of services, including a simple setup for an online store and real-time inventory management across different booking channels, customised vouchers for various booking scenarios, and integration with local payment gateways. According to the company, the platform reduces operational costs and increases efficiencies for experience providers.
KKday began piloting Rezio in Taiwan and Japan in March 2020. In six months, over 300 providers adopted the platform across these two markets. Providers include small-scale travel and activity providers to large scale operators such as H.I.S., an online travel agency in Japan.
As of today, Rezio has served over 150,000 customers.
“We believe that KKday’s strong execution and innovative mindset will drive the tourism industry in Japan even under adverse conditions. We expect that they (the founders) will leverage a wealth of experience in digitalising the tourism industry and tap into the rise of independent travelling both in Japan and globally,” said Kazushi Sano, Managing Director of Cool Japan Fund.
“We expect traveler demand to bounce back quickly when leisure travel opens up again. The human desire to travel, experience and connect is fundamental. We have high conviction in KKday’s leadership team and believe the company is primed to seize the immense opportunity ahead of us,” said Kuo-Yi Lim, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Monk’s Hill Ventures.
In November 2018, KKday had secured an undisclosed amount in Series B-plus, co-led by LINE Ventures and the Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund. This came close to six months after it raised investment from Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund and launched a flagship store under Fliggy, Alibaba Group’s travel portal in China.
Prior to that, in February, the firm raised US$10.5 million Series B funding round led by Japanese travel giant H.I.S.