WhereTo, a startup that uses AI to improve business travel planning, became part of the Emergence family today! We led the Series A financing for the San Francisco-based company whose platform addresses the pain points so many corporate travelers encounter -- wasted time using booking tools that are time-consuming, cumbersome, and restrictive.
When we first met Ryan Wenger, WhereTo’s CEO and founder, our team was excited to hear him describe his vision for using AI to enhance corporate travel by improving the traveler experience. We were also intrigued by the story of the product’s inception – which I’ll share with you here.
Two years ago, Ryan launched WhereFor.com, the first search engine that used a traveler’s budget, along with real time flight and hotel prices, to search for destinations. With more than 2M users, the app had gained considerable traction when a travel manager for a Fortune 10 company approached Ryan to see if his team could create something similar for business travel. Over the last 18 months, the team worked with that company to build and deploy a solution that would make road warriors and travel managers alike happy – and WhereTo was born.
There are a lot of things about WhereTo that make it unique, including its proprietary algorithm that customizes recommendations for price, quality, and loyalty accounts. The algorithm also factors in traffic and real-time commute conditions into its recommendations. WhereTo also allows companies to adjust the algorithm to meet their travel guidelines. All these features make booking and traveling more cost-effective, faster and easier – in fact, customers are seeing immediate ROI and reporting that time-to-book has been reduced by up to 75%.
We’re very excited to be partnering with WhereTo, Ryan and his team and look forward to watching them continue to grow and succeed!