Hong Kong-based unicorn Klook has been revolutionising the travel industry with its travel activities and services booking platform.
It currently offers over 100,000 things-to-do and services in over 350 destinations, including attraction tickets, tours, local transportation, food and beverage, as well as unique experiences.
Since October 2018, it became the most-searched travel activities and services company globally on Google.
Earlier in April, it raised US$225 million in a Series D+ funding, bringing its total Series D funding round to US$425 million.
It recently turned five, and is confident of surpassing 60 million annual trip bookings for this year.
“When we started the business five years ago, we faced a major roadblock due to the fragmentation of in-destination travel services,” said Ethan Lin, Klook CEO and co-founder.
“We’ve not only overcome the challenge but also transformed the sector in the process through innovative digital solutions, collaboration with local tourism authorities, championing talents who share our vision, and empowering operators for a healthier and more diverse local tourism ecosystem.”
Headcount To Grow More Than Double
Sharing global expansion plans, Klook said that it wants to strengthen its footprint in Asia Pacific and Europe.
It will continue to invest in Asia Pacific, which is touted to be the world’s fastest-growing market for tourism.
For one, it wants to boost investments in Tokyo in light of the upcoming 2020 Summer Olympics.
For Europe, it wants to better serve travelers in that region by launching multiple languages including French, Italian, Spanish, Russian and German in the coming months.
Currently, Klook only offers localised services in nine different languages.
In line with the business expansion, it aims to grow its current headcount from 1,200 to over 2,500 across more than 30 offices by the end of next year.
In terms of other business plans, Klook said that it wants to enhance its capability to tailor recommendations for travelers based on their search and booking behaviours.
It also wants to provide further support to its local operators, with plans to optimise operational procedures such as booking and post-experience reviews.
The startup is also expanding its innovation capabilities to Singapore, focusing on connectivity integration and data science, to complement its current engineering hub in Shenzhen, China.
It also aims to launch point-to-point train tickets and passes for the world’s major rail networks. Last week, it launched China Rail on its platform in an effort to digitise complex rail systems.
“Asia-Pacific and Europe are both extremely diverse and inter-connected. Adopting a hyper-localised go-to-market strategy is the key to Klook’s success in Asia,” said Eric Gnock Fah, COO and co-founder of Klook.
“As the pioneer of applying cutting-edge mobile-first technology to the in-destination sector, we hope to replicate our strong growth in Asia-Pacific and empower European travellers to discover, book and experience the best things to do anywhere, anytime.”
Featured Image Credit: Klook