Easol, the leading experience commerce platform, is announcing an investment of $25 million from Tiger Global with participation from existing investors Notion Capital, Foundation Capital, Y Combinator and FMZ Ventures led by Michael Zeisser, the former Chairman of US investments at Alibaba who is also joining the board. According to CrunchBase, this will be the fifth largest Series A fundraise of all time for a UK-based SaaS company*.
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Easol founders Lisa and Ben Simpson (Photo: Business Wire)
Easol is a global company powering a new wave of experience businesses in over 130 countries. Ranging from large-multinationals (forecasting $200m bookings in 2022) to independent creators building businesses from their passions – current customers include Wanderlust, Ibiza Rocks, Global Cycle Network, Untravelled Paths and Envision Festival. Following Easol’s successful Seed funding round of $4.5m in March 2021, this latest investment indicates the enormous potential of Easol to unlock the significant pent up demand for the experience and travel market that is set to rebuild in 2022. Since closing their seed funding, Easol has more than 10X the number of creators it works with, growing the customer base by 913%. Transaction numbers have increased by 50x and total spend across Easol by over 30x. The company is forecasted to treble this growth further in 2022.
Easol empowers experience businesses to launch and scale their companies seamlessly and on their terms – going from an idea to on sale in as little as 24 hrs. No longer faced with having to stitch together multiple third party tools for key aspects of their business such as building and hosting a website, taking bookings and managing payments, creators remain in complete control of their business, their brand and their data as well as being able to drive more direct sales and revenue. On average experience creators on Easol save up to 50%** on fees when compared to patchwork solutions. For an experience business with a $2m turnover, that could amount to over $80k of savings per year – money that can be instead invested heavily in growth.
Over the last two years, where many booking platforms have responded to the pandemic by launching virtual offerings, Easol instead has focused on supporting their experience creators to retain their customers by helping them to seamlessly move millions of bookings and launching new features to make booking adjustments like postponements, booking edits or flexible payment options easy.
Ben Simpson, Co-Founder and CEO of Easol said: “Lisa and I set out to build Easol in 2017 after years of frustration when running our own experiences. We were faced with hacking together so many third party tools whilst trying to successfully operate and grow our business and so we designed Easol as the dream all-in-one platform we would have wanted for our own experience business! It’s been a tough two years, however, very inspiring to watch our incredible team pull together in extreme circumstances to support our creators through the hardest time of their businesses to come out of this stronger than ever. With this new funding we are excited to expand our team across London HQ, Lisbon and US offices and invest heavily further into building a world-class product with more new and exciting tools to enable experience creators to power their own growth.”
Evan Feinberg from Tiger Global commented: “Easol’s market-leading platform and industry expertise allows clients to imagine and market unique experiences for consumers. In the rapidly expanding experience commerce market, we believe Easol is poised to capture outsized growth, and we are excited to partner with Ben, Lisa and the Easol team.”
*This is according to Crunchbase, using the filters of “SaaS”, “UK” and “Series A”.
**Based on a comparison of costs such as transaction fee, set up fee, booking fees and payment processing fees that a typical experience seller would pay to competitors vs Easol.
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