Global Rooms Limited, the owner and operator of the NIDA Rooms hotel reservation system, today secured an equity investment of US$ 4.2 million. The financing was led by two leading Asian venture capital firms, Convergence Ventures (www.convergencevc.com) and CyberAgent Ventures (www.cyberagentventures.com). This was the Company’s second institutional capital raise since its inception in second half of 2015; Emergebridge (www.emergebridge.com), an independent specialist advisory and investment firm bridging emerging and western markets acted as the Company’s advisor. NIDA Rooms is the first and largest “Virtual Hotel Operator” (VHO) in Southeast Asia.
Global Rooms introduced NIDA Rooms offerings in Thailand in February this year. In less than three months, the company has secured over 1,500 hotels in Thailand and intends to increase the figure to 3,000 by year end.
NIDA Rooms Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Co-Founder, Kaneswaran Avili. NIDA Rooms will utilise the funds to further expand its business in Thailand as well as to increase its market share in the Southeast Asia region.
Avili was speaking at a press conference after signing an agreement with Convergence Ventures, which was represented by its Managing Partner, Adrian M. Li and CyberAgent Ventures, which was represented by its Vice President, Steven Vanada.
Avili stressed that NIDA Rooms’ efforts to solve the hotel industry’s low occupancy and low Average Room Rates (ARR) problems by offering hoteliers a unique distribution channel for their unsold inventory whilst simultaneously giving the consumer a smart-phone app that allows them to choose accommodation at the Right Location, for the Right Price with the Right Quality. To date, NIDA Rooms has completed the first phase of its start-up by partnering and branding over 3,500 hotels in four key countries and integrating its marketing activities with reputable Online Travel Agents (OTAs) worldwide.
“The signing of this agreement is an important milestone for the company’s future development plan, as NIDA Rooms is now embarking on the second phase in fulfilling its promises to our hotel partners by generating bookings and revenues. We aim to increase the hotel partnership to 7,500 by year end while focusing on enhancing the ‘value added experience’ for our consumers,” added Avili.
Meanwhile, Li said, “The NIDA Rooms opportunity fit our investment thesis well. They have a strong and experienced team leading the implementation of a new business model developed to address the pain points of cost-conscious travelers around the world.
Vanada said that, “Budget travel is booming and is a multi-billion dollar market, so it’s safe to say that this business model has big market potential. If we look at LCCs, they have seen a huge growth in the last decade or so, and we believe it is only a matter of time before the budget hotels follow suit.
“Apart from being a good investment, NIDA Rooms is led by two very experienced people, Chairman and Co-Founder, Dennis Melka and Avili. Avili has extensive experience in the budget travel industry, and we believe that Avili and Melka, together with their team, are the best people to execute this business.” added Vanada.
NIDA Rooms Appoints a New Board Member
The Board of Directors of NIDA Rooms is pleased to announce the appointment of Justin Cohen as its new Board Member effective immediately.
Justin Cohen has comprehensive knowledge and experience in the e-commerce and digital sectors along with a strong background in online startups. Justin has served as Board Director, Managing Director and senior roles for several companies, including 90min.com, J Squared Pte Ltd, NEC Computers, PartyGaming PLC, and HomeGuru Pty Ltd.
“Justin’s vast experience will add a valuable perspective to our Board and we look forward to benefitting from his digital and product development experiences,” said Melka.