In June Booking.com announced they started an accelerator program, Booking Booster, for sustainable tourism startups. That appeared to be a success, as they are expanding their program and double it’s funds.
Booking Booster continues
Booking reserved a €4 million budget to support international startups enrolling for the program. Participants in the Booster program can win up to €500.000 if they find a way to scale-up their business plan. Startups in tourism can apply now. The first winners were announced in June.
Besides expanding the program to support sustainable tourism startups, Booking also launched two new initiatives. Booking Labs are short weekend programmes to give early-stage startups the knowledge and insights to make an impact. Teaching them skills and tools to grow matures them before they enter the market completely blank. Coaching over the weekend might just be the support a team needs to make the next step. Startups can win 10.000 to 25.000 euro and the first competition weekend has been taking place in Barcelona, presenting 11 startups. The next is planned for 1-3 March in Tel Aviv.
Part of Booking Cares is also the Booking Cares Fund, a €2 million fund available for non-profit organisations with ‘the potential to disrupt in sustainable business’. Pioneers with innovative ideas or ambitious plans can apply for the fund to receive financial support between 100.000 and 250.000 euro. They can apply if they are dreaming of transforming the tourism industry or are eager to make a positive and lasting impression in the global tourism industry.
By Booking doubling the supports and broaden the programs, we expect an increase in travel related startup and funding news in 2018.