Avijatrik Tourism, the online travel platform that has been building the Airbnb of Bangladesh, has closed a new seed round led by Paragon Group and a group of undisclosed angel investors. The company did not disclose details about the round but said it has raised north of 10 million Taka in this round.
The new funding would allow the company to invest more in building out its local tourism marketplace, expand its services, invest in technology, and spend more on growth. “With this investment, we plan to empower root-level local tourism entrepreneurs with technology and help promote their services,” says Nazmul Islam, Founder, and CEO of the company. “We are building a local tourism marketplace which would allow us to expand our local community tourism and penetrate across the country”.
The company has also built out a home-sharing platform called Avijatrik Holiday Home. “Avijatrik Holiday Home is the country's first unique home-sharing platform where you can find forest bungalows, private resorts, beach houses, riverside villas, and private vacation rental houses, says Mr. Nazmul.” The company says it will train and build 15 local community-based tourism in different destinations around Bangladesh.
Travel tech companies in Bangladesh have been receiving increasing attention from investors over the past few years. This year alone a handful of travel tech companies raised investment from both local and international investors showing the sign that the sector is about to see a major change.
Propelled by rising incomes and a growing appetite for exploration, travel is on the rise in Bangladesh. An increasing number of Bangladeshis are now traveling abroad and locally and spending generously. Outbound travel spending rose from $404.7 million in FY15 to $436.4 million in FY16, a 7.83 percent rise from the previous year. Local travel has seen a dramatic expansion in the last few years. It shows a sign of the rise of a new middle and upper class in the country. As more people travel, they are also opting for more flexible and convenient options for their travel-related services.
Founded in 2015 with an ambition to promote local travel experiences in Bangladesh, Avijatrik provides holiday experiences in different parts of Bangladesh. The company provides both traditional tourism services and community tourism services, where it collaborates with the local community, allowing travelers a chance to stay with the local community, experience new culture, and lifestyle. Avijatrik can be called Airbnb of Bangladesh. The company says with the new investment, it plans to expand its community tourism vertical and build a dominant position in the space.