Omio Raises $100M For Expansion Of Travel Booking App

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Omio, the Berlin-based travel booking app, announced on Wednesday (Aug. 19) that it has raised $100 million to fuel further expansion as the industry rebounds in Europe after a severe hit from COVID-19.

New and existing investors are teaming up to provide the funding. The group includes Temasek, Kinnevik, Goldman Sachs Asset Management L.P., NEA and Kleiner Perkins, Omio said in a press release.

The big investment comes amid “clear signs of recovery,” with Europeans planning “last-minute summer vacations” and local travel picking up again, Omio said.

The company plans to use the money to fuel organic growth while also making potential acquisitions in the travel sector.

The travel booking app earlier this year unveiled an expansion into North America as well as the Canadian and U.S. markets.

“Travel is an eternal need and I have no doubt in the comeback of the industry,” Naren Shaam, founder and CEO of Omio, said in a press release. “We have seen a very promising recovery of our business over the past weeks.”

The travel app, which helps consumers search for and book various forms of transportation, said business is rebounding, but with a different focus.

There is greater demand for ground transportation, Omio said, as consumers remain wary of flying amid ongoing concerns over the continued threat of COVID-19. Due to similar concerns, consumers are also increasing their usage of apps to avoid kiosks and long lines, another factor that has helped boost the use of its travel booking app, noted Omio.

According to the company, booking levels have rebounded to more than half of their pre-COVID-19 levels, with usage particularly strong in France and Germany.

After furloughing 90 percent of its workers this past spring, Omio has brought its staff back up to full-strength with 350 workers, Shaam told Reuters.

“Consumer expectations are changing, and the industry will need to evolve to new standards and provide new products with a strong focus on sustainability,” Shaam said. “We will use the fresh capital to drive this change.”