This Dublin business travel firm has nabbed millions to conquer Europe

Roomex’s clients include Musgrave, Dairygold and Kepak.

By Jonathan Keane Reporter, Fora

HOTEL BOOKING PLATFORM Roomex has secured €8 million to push further into Europe.

The Dublin-based startup’s platform is focused on business travel. Its technology allows companies to book rooms and manage invoices, with much of the process automated.

Its clients include Musgrave, Dairygold and Kepak and it claims that more than 50,000 business travellers in Ireland and the UK use its service.

The series A funding round was led by venture capital firm Draper Esprit with participation from Frontline Ventures and Harmony Capital. The startup previously raised €2.5 million in 2016.

Roomex is targeting more small- and medium-sized companies that typically have to carry out manual bookings and expense management, such as submitting their receipts, for their travel costs.

The market for online travel booking services is largely focused on the consumer side with sites like Booking.com.

Draper Esprit’s Nicola McClafferty, who will be joining Roomex’s board, said companies have also turned to outsourcing their corporate travel management as a result.

“Despite the innovation we have seen across consumer travel, managing business travel remains a real pain point for most businesses,” she said.

New markets

Roomex has a strong foothold in the UK market where it has a London office. The fresh investment will be pumped into hitting new markets in Europe.

It plans to double its staff over the next year and a half, hiring for roles in sales and engineering.

Chief executive Jack Donaghy said the corporate travel market is worth €1.3 trillion annually.

“We’re really only at the tip of the iceberg in terms of what we can achieve in the global travel industry market,” he said.

According to Roomex’s most recent accounts, the firm reported a loss of over €500,000 in 2016, pushing accumulated losses to roughly €745,700.

At the end of 2016, the company employed an average monthly workforce of 31 people. In May of this year, it launched a recruitment drive to hire 20 workers.

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