In a bid to tap into new revenue streams, technology-based budget hotel chain Treebo Hotels has launched a new mobile app called ‘Hero’. This app will tap into traditional offline sales channels, thereby expanding its customer base and creating new avenues for sales.
With the Hero app, Treebo aims to target intermediaries like auto-rickshaw and cab drivers, individual agents, small shopkeepers, and others who typically operate at airports, railway stations, and bus stands. These intermediaries often help customers arriving in the city with their travel bookings, especially those who do not make prior bookings.
Treebo is counting on these intermediaries to drive awareness about its services and amenities through direct recommendations. It believes that this will help it tap into a new customer segment that has conventionally transacted with and trusted these offline intermediaries only.
“As a hotel chain we have always used both online and offline channels to drive sales for us, and we have deployed technology to drive convergence between them. With the launch of Hero we are tapping into another potent sales channel - the local offline intermediaries. We are not only excited about welcoming a new set of travellers who book through such intermediaries but also about creating opportunities for such micro entrepreneurs to enhance their incomes and become part of the digital economy,” Sidharth Gupta, co-founder of Treebo said in a statement.
All these intermediaries have to do is download the app, register with Treebo, and start selling hotel rooms to customers. “The app offers full entrepreneurial flexibility to the users, including deciding their own commission levels. The app will also create a new way of income generations for urban, educated individuals seeking part time employment, like homemakers, college students, retired individuals and even those looking to supplement their income,” Treebo said in a statement.
Treebo was founded by Sidharth, Rahul Chaudhary, and Kadam Jeet Jain in 2015. It currently has an inventory of 10K rooms and 400 hotels across 85 cities. It has so far raised $57 million in three rounds of funding, most recent being $34 million (Rs 220 crore) in a Series C funding round led by Hong Kong-based investment firms Ward Ferry Management and Karst Peak Capital.