French traveltech Okarito, a digital platform for companies to organise and optimize their business trips while ensuring the well-being of their employees, has closed a fundraising round of €2.1 million, led by Axeleo Capital, and accompanied by Kima Ventures and various business angels including Geoffroy Roux de Bézieux (President of Notus Technologies). The startup will use the funds to accelerate its business development and help more companies ensure safe travel for their employees.
Founded in January 2018, Okarito helps startups and SMEs simplify the management of their employees’ business travel. The startup provides a booking and administrative tracking platform that offers an intuitive booking experience. With 24/7 customer service based in Paris, the startup also accompanies its travellers throughout their journey. Okarito offers a comprehensive inventory of flights, hotels and trains with competitive options in terms of both choice and price, giving its customers around 30% savings compared to a traditional travel agency.
Since the launching in early 2019, the volume of bookings made on Okarito has increased by 30% each month. Brice Huet, co-founder and commercial director of Okarito explains: “Our customers have between 5 and 1000 employees, but all have in common the need to create new business opportunities and build social ties between their teams, which naturally leads them to travel. They all share the desire to end the cumbersome processes of expense notes, to simplify their accounting, while ensuring the well-being of their employees on the go. This fundraiser will allow us to continue to improve our platform, and accelerate commercially. We are extremely proud to work with Axeleo, Kima and Notus who are all experts in the development of solutions that solve real problems in companies.”
Okarito is already projecting itself as a booking platform for a post-Covid world. Remi Duvoux, co-founder and CEO of Okarito expands: “Companies have been faced with the repatriation of their employees and time-consuming management of cancelled travel reimbursements, and they never want to face them again! In a post-covid world, they can no longer afford not to know where their collaborators are. With a lighter cost structure and proprietary platform, we can adapt very quickly and offer relevant services to our customers. We’ve never had as many new prospects as we have since lockdown.”
Okarito has already convinced more than 200 companies of its travel management platform, including startups Welcome to the Jungle, Prestashop, Mailjet, Payfit, ToucanToco, as well as more traditional SMEs like the Ayor Group or the So Press Group (SO FOOT, Society).
This first round of financing will be used to accelerate commercial development with SMEs in France, as well as to continue to improve the booking platform. The funds will also strengthen the team: the goal is to increase the number of employees by the end of the year, including in development, sales, marketing and customer support.