In a recent development, Delhi based mobile travel marketplace SeekSherpa has raised seed investment from a group of angels associated with early stage accelerator VentureNursery. The group of angel investors include Amit and Arihant Patni, Anand Ladsariya, Anirudh Damani, Neeraj Goenka, Ravi Kiran, Sanjay Mehta, Shravan Shroff and Vishal Maheshwari.
The amount raised has been not disclosed officially but TC informs that SeekSherpa has raised about Rs. 50 lakh. The funds will be used to expand operations and for hiring. “We have 500 Sherpas (local guides) from 26 cities and are aiming at taking this number to 10,000 across the cities. The funds will last us for about a year,” SeekSherpa’s co-founder Dhruv Raj Gupta said.
Founded by Gupta and Sukhmani Singh, SeekSherpa is a mobile application that links travellers with locals who create unique and tailor-made experiences that tourists can book. Travellers can book these experiences and also post questions, which they can direct to a locale of their choice.
Typically, any experience is less than Rs. 3,000 per traveller and does not last more than three hours from start to end. The experience could include local music lesson, food tasting and photography drive to lesser known monuments, among others. With this engagement Travellers get the local flavour of a place which is missed out and at the same time empowering locals by providing a new source of money.
The startup adds Sherpas with the help of interns in newer cities. So far, it has about 15 interns and one full time employee. ET reports that SeekSherpa already has about 500 Sherpas from eight cities and 100 experiences like Delhi momo trail and shopping through Chandini Chowk. The app is free for the traveller but the firm gets a 20% commission from the Sherpas for every experience booked.
At present SeekShepra is in test mode and inviting localities of Delhi to join the startup. The mobile app is also not open for public. Interestingly, the startup was part of the January batch of VentureNursery. Later on the investors decided to back the product seeing its potential.
Till date VentureNursery has accelerated 14 startups of which eight have secured seed funding including Oravel, Catapoolt, Klip.in, Interview Master and InvenZone, The Venturator and Peter’s Pan.