(ViajaNet) May 25, 2011 – Brazil-based ViajaNet, the leading independent Brazilian online travel agency (OTA), announced that it has received $19 million in a significant new growth round led by Redpoint Ventures with participation from General Catalyst.
ViajaNet will use the capital infusion to improve the site experience, expand the product offering and advance ViajaNet’s aggressive growth plans. Founded in late 2009 by Alex Todres and Bob Rossato, in partnership with IG Expansion, ViajaNet sold over $30 million in online fares in 2010 and employs over 120 in its Sao Paulo offices.
“We founded ViajaNet with the vision of building the leading online travel company in Latin America,” said ViajaNet co-Founder Alex Todres. “Through the great work of our employees and partners we are executing on that vision. Bob Rossato, co-Founder of Viajanet added: “Having the help of experienced U.S. venture capital firms like Redpoint and General Catalyst will be extremely helpful as we push to take ViajaNet to the next level.”
In 2010, only 14 percent of the $58 billion Latin America travel market was booked online, and by 2012, online market share is expected to expand to more than 20%1. Gross bookings for OTAs like ViajaNet are expected to double to nearly $5 billion within two years. In Latin America, online travel penetration remains significantly lower than mature markets like Europe and the U.S. where online gross bookings represent between 30 and 40 percent of the total market creating strong tailwinds for growth in this sector.
Jeff Brody, Partner at Redpoint and board member, commented: “Online travel is exploding in Brazil and across Latin America, the opportunity to work with Viajanet to tackle this market is quite exciting.” Pueo Keffer, Principal at Redpoint, who will join the board, added: “This investment reflects Redpoint’s excitement and ongoing commitment to emerging technology startups in Brazil.”
“We are thrilled to team up with ViajaNet, the leading independent Brazilian OTA, continuing General Catalyst’s strong focus on the online travel vertical,” said Joel Cutler, Partner, General Catalyst. “The management team at ViajaNet has shown an impressive ability to scale in Brazil and we are now looking to help them replicate this success across Latin America.”
Founded in 2009, ViajaNet is the leading independent Brazilian online travel agency (OTA). The company is located in Sao Paulo, Brazil and today employs over 120 across its rapidly growing operations. ViajaNet provides a wide array of travel options online including flights, hotels, cruises and vacation packages to its consumers. ViajaNet’s mission is to provide the most attractive pricing and simple search experience to travelers throughout Brazil and now Latin America. For more information please find us at www.viajanet.com.br.
About Redpoint Ventures
Founded in 1999, Redpoint Ventures is a leading technology focused venture capital and growth equity investment firm with over $2.5B in capital under management. Redpoint focuses on investing globally in technology ventures across the internet, digital media, mobile, and enterprise sectors to accelerate growth and build industry defining companies. Its partners have been involved in 41 IPOs and 66 upside acquisitions. The firm is headquartered in Menlo Park, CA with offices in Los Angeles and Shanghai, China. For more information, please visit: www.redpoint.com.
About General Catalyst Partners
General Catalyst Partners is a venture capital firm that invests in exceptional entrepreneurs who are building the technology-based companies that will lead innovation and transform industries. Founded in 2000, General Catalyst Partners leverages its principals’ extensive operational, business development and technological expertise to provide portfolio companies with a catalyst for success through business-building and partnership development assistance. General Catalyst is headquartered in Cambridge, Mass. For more information, please visit: www.generalcatalyst.com.