Fundación Bancolombia and Fondo Acción led a US$500k round in Awake Travel, a Colombian travel booking platform for eco-friendly trips.
(Contxto) Who says travel startups are taboo for venture capitalists (VC) right now? Not Colombian Awake Travel, who recently raised a seed investment for US$500,000. The Bancolombia Foundation and Fondo Acción led the round.
Consequently, the startup will develop its platform for booking eco-friendly trips and experiences in Colombia. Awake Travel shall also use the funds to deepen its ties with its platform’s hosts.
“We hope to contribute further to all the community and nature-oriented projects that are committed to preserving our forests,” said the startup on social media.
Eco-tourism is in, according to Awake Travel
Many travelers thinking about their next trip will probably be wary of big, foreign cities with crowded spaces. We can thank Covid-19 for that.
As a result, people will likely embrace local destinations in the great outdoors.
This logic is Awake’s bet; the startup expects to generate sales for over US$300,000 per month as of next January.
Sales numbers aside, it’s also an opportunity for unique destinations and small communities in Colombia to receive some attention.
Moreover, the fact that it closed funding showcases investors’ interest not only in turning a profit but in generating a positive impact as well.
But at least in the short term, the tourism industry in some Latam countries will be hard-hit.
Tourism’s troubling recovery
According to Statista and the World Travel & Tourism Council, Mexico’s GDP will take a 15.5 percent dip due to its reliance on the hospitality industry. That places it as the most vulnerable country among the largest economies.
Meanwhile, Brazil’s GDP is expected to fall 7.7 percent and so it sits at 10th place.
It’s still hard to see the light at the end of the Covid-induced tunnel and undoubtedly the travel industry’s recovery will be slow.
But Awake‘s investment shows that not all is lost as far as travel startups are concerned.