Venture Capital: What COVID? Indonesian Travel Aggregator Traveloka Snags $250M
Its businesses are struggling back to their feet, says Traveloka.
Indonesian online travel portal Traveloka announced Tuesday that it raised $250 million in a round led by a global financial institution with participation by some existing investors. Traveloka said the investment came despite the travel sector being in an “unprecedented challenging state,” and a historic drop in its own business activity “to levels never seen before.” (Jakarta Globe)
Traveloka sees turmoil in its Indonesian market
According to Indonesia’s Central Statistics Agency, the number of domestic and international air travel passengers dropped 43 percent to 21 million in the first five months of this year. That was down from 36.8 million in the same period last year. Hotel occupancy was down to 14.5 % in May compared to 43.5% last year.
“Without a doubt, Traveloka has been profoundly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,” stated Ferry Unardi, Co-founder and CEO of Traveloka. “We have experienced the lowest business rate that we have ever seen since our inception.”
Businesses limping back to normal
Traveloka said, however, that it was seeing a gradual recovery in its key travel markets. It said Vietnam was already close to pre-COVID levels, and that Thailand had recovered by 50%. Further, Indonesia and Malaysia were showing strong week-to-week improvement.
The travel aggregator said it had implemented business optimization measures to conserve capital. Further, it had introduced many innovative initiatives to cater to the shifting demand patterns in the travel industry.
Willson Cuaca, Managing Partner of EV Growth, an existing investor who participated in this funding round, described the virus crisis as a crisis of the current generation. However, he said he was confident that Traveloka would weather the crisis.
Traveloka said it would use the fresh capital to fortify its balance sheet and to expand some of its key products in selected areas.
It previously raised $420 million in April 2019, a round led by GIC with participation from EV Growth.
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