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Omidyar Network Leads Series B Funding In Travel Startup RailYatri

Omidyar Network Leads Series B Funding In Travel Startup RailYatri

RailYatri Aims To Reach 10 Mn Annual Transaction Rate

Noida-based long-distance travel app, RailYatri has raised an undisclosed amount of Series B funding led by Omidyar Network.

The funding round saw participation from other existing investors including Nandan Nilekani, Blume Ventures and Helion Venture Partners.

With the newly raised funding, the startup plans to reach 10 Mn annual transaction rate this year.

Commenting in the funding, Manish Rathi, Co-founder and CEO RailYatri said, “We are overwhelmed by the travellers response to our platform, and at the current growth rates we expect to be India’s largest traveller destination this year. Our low cost of acquisition allows growth with margins and RailYatri is now expanding into budget hotels and packages, for which we are aggressively hiring in all verticals.”

Founded by Manish Rathi, Kapil Raizada and Sachin Saxena in 2011, RailYatri is a crowdsourced platform for trains and travel-related services. It provides comprehensive information on train status, reservation status, seat availability, amenities etc.

On the investment, Siddharth Nautiyal, Investment Partner, Omidyar Network, said “We continue to be very impressed with the growth, consumer feedback and large-scale impact of the RailYatri platform. They are constantly innovating to improve the travel experience for millions of travellers every day. RailYatri’s India-first solution underscores frugal innovation with its data and information-centric approach to travel commerce.”

In a media statement, the company claimed that it is touching $14.98 Mn (INR 100 Cr) run rate in bookings in its first full year. Also, it claimed that RailYatri’s offline reach extends to over 100 cities with the Tier-II and Tier III cities helping to drive the growth.

In January, the startup acqui-hired Kochi-based food delivery technology startup, YatraChef. With this, YatraChef will manage the pan-India supply side of RailYatri’s in-transit delivery services.

The startup received venture funding of unknown amount in October 2016 with a total funding of $486K. In October 2016, it had raised an undisclosed amount of funding from existing investors including Nandan Nilekani, Helion Ventures, Omidyar Partners and Blume Ventures.

RailYatri has continued to strengthen its supply side commerce capabilities to create premium and different offerings for its customer base. It provides comprehensive information on trains, passenger amenities at stations, seat availability, tickets, platforms and the speed of the train, along with personalised alerts.

Other travel-related startups operating in the same domain like RailYatri include TravelKhana, IRCTC, KhanaGaDi, RailRider, etc.

The Indian railway food delivery industry’s estimated GMV for 2016 was $300 Mn, research firm RedSeer said in its report.

As India goes online with millions travelling in trains every day, the scalability of RailYatri’s proposition looks promising and the boost of Series B funding will help the startup expand itself pan-India.

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