Active lifestyle platform ZOZI has announced its first acquisition: Software as a Service reservation system, TripFlavor.
No financial terms of the deal were disclosed, but TJ Sassani, ZOZI's CEO & founder, did tell VatorNews that the company has acquired TripFlavor's real-time tours and activities SaaS reservation system and merchant relationships, which have all been intregrated into ZOZI.
"ZOZI has focused on our consumer brand for three years, thus enabling us to drive meaningful volume of high quality and repeat customers to our merchant partners. Now, and only because we've succeeded at that, does inserting technology into the flow make sense," Sassani said in an interview.
Launched in 2011, TripFlavor was an OpenTable-style platform for activities and tours. It was started by CEO and co-founder Sam Edelson, an early Airbnb employee, and Gene Drabkin, CTO and co-founder, a former Ning engineer.
The company was able to raise a seed round of financing in late 2011 from prominent angel investors and entrepreneurs including Nathan Blecharczyk, the co-founder & CTO of Airbnb; Mark Leslie, the founder, chairman and CEO of Veritas Software; and Ken Keller, co-founder of IGN Entertainment.
Along with the acquisition news, ZOZI also announced the launch of ZOZI Advance, which offers real-time booking, scheduling, payments, and customer relationship management SaaS platform for activity merchants. It will run on the technology acquired from TripFlavor.
"The TripFlavor team built an incredible technology platform that solved specific problems for both our customers and merchants. For our customers: ZOZI Advance will soon enable real-time bookings across thousands of activities in the US and Canada – and soon globally," said Sassani.
"For our merchants: it enables real-time bookings, scheduling, payments, and customer management for their entire business. ZOZI Advance is unique for activity merchants because beyond providing the SasS platform, it’s the first platform to also bring substantial, high-quality new customer flow to the merchant via a branded channel."
Sassini would not, however, disclose what would be happening to the member of the team from TripFlavor.
Founded in 2007, the San Francisco-based ZOZI is an active lifestyle platform that connects people with local experiences, getaways, and the gear they need.
With ZOZI, users can discover and book experiences that have been curated by a team of in-house experts; these include full-moon kayaking, vineyard touring by bike, surfing and relaxing in a private coastal villa. They also offer experiences with celebrities, such as snowboarding the Jackson Hole backcountry with three-time X-Games Gold Medalist and Creator of Art of Flight, Travis Rice.
ZOZI offers experiences in dozens of cities across the US and Canada, and allows users to book getaways across all seven continents.
When it comes to competition, Sassini said, ZOZI does not really have any.
"We've built a brand with a clear mission that people are passionate about: living active lifestyles. For our merchants on ZOZI Advance, we offer access to millions of potential new customers via ZOZI.com; other pure SasS companies cannot offer this. For customers, we are focused on creating an engaging brand that connects our customers with an active lifestyles."
Ultimately, Sassini told me that the goal of the company is to create "relationships with tens of thousands of merchants globally and also provide them access to technology to run their business, while also becoming the go-to and trusted brand in the space for consumers."
The company has raised $17.5 million in funding to date from investors including the Pritzker/Vlock Family office, 500 Startups, Launch Capital, Forerunner Ventures, Par Capital, ZIG Capital, and others.
(Image source: http://www.zozi.com)