EC1 Capital

SkyScanner acquires Twizoo.

Read about how Twizoo fared from seed investment to Skyscanner acquisition.
Julian Julian Thu 9th Nov 2017 09:32

Back in April 2015 EC1 made a seed investment into Twizoo, you can read our announcement on the company investment here.

Today we're pleased to announce that Skyscanner has acquired Twizoo.

Looking back over that initial blog post it's always interesting to see how startups fare on their journey, good or bad so we all can learn. 

Three of our early exits have been mobile app-based companies sold to billion-dollar corporate acquirers.

Twizoo started by building an AI platform that 'listened' to the twitter stream and generated contextual analysis and recommendations of the best places to eat, filtered by distance from your location. Twizoo's ambition was to provide real-time recommendations based on genuine opinions on social media vs the tired and dated reviews on sites such as Yelp, TripAdvisor et al. Reviews on these sites can also be fake and increasingly hard for companies to collect as they are siloed on social media sites. 

Twizoo's technology allowed companies to filter through all the noise and automate finding and analysing genuine user opinions about a restaurant, as Madeline Parra, Co-Founder of Twizoo says "it's like finding a needle in a haystack....millions of times a day!"

Twizoo kicked off in London and then began to roll out across other UK and then US cities. 

Twizoo originally wanted to deliver these results directly back to their own user base via the Twizoo app.

App distribution is still hard and discovery is one of the main problems for consumers unless you are a 'featured app' for a sustained period it can be hard to get critical mass without requiring huge amounts of capital to scale. 

Twizoo decided to pivot into delivering results for other company audiences instead via a Javascript widget, that used the same AI mining technology to 'productise' specific social media reviews on Twitter that were proven to show engagement, and position it alongside relevant content on travel and hospitality sites to increase booking conversion rates. Rather than being an app company Twizoo morphed into being a data company.

Several large customers were signed up and it was proven that the technology could lift booking conversion rates by single-digit percentages, that is a significant uplift in revenue on the huge volumes of traffic that flow through these sites.
Prior to raising a new investment round, SkyScanner acquired the company. For SkyScanner, the benefits that this technology acquisition will give them over their competition is significant. 

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