4 years ago

TripAdvisor acquisition roadshow continues – snaps up technology and team from CruiseWise

Three acquisitions in as many months for Tripadvisor – this time performing an acqui and tech-hire for CruiseWise, the online travel agency startup targeting fans of cruise trips.

As with its previous small deals in recent months, terms were not disclosed. A statement says the acquisition is for some members of the CruiseWise and technology associated with the product.

The deal will be used to bolster TripAdvisor’s CruiseCritic brand, a long-standing part of the company’s Independent Traveler division.

Its other acquisitions have sat within the Smarter Travel Media portfolio of offshoot brands which also includes BookingBuddy, SniqueAway and Tingo.

CruiseCritic, until now, has primarily focused on covering the cruise industry with a vast array of forums and news.

Whether the tools and people it has purchased as part of the deal will see CruiseCritic evolve so users can buy cruise products on the site remains to be seen (the statement says “non-transactional technology” will be integrated), but elsewhere TripAdvisor is gradually moving into the world of transactions.

The most high profile of its trio of recent acquisitions was for the Jetsetter deals service. This came just weeks after it snapped up the little known photo sharing service Tiny Post.

CruiseWise was founded (TLabs here) in May 2010 by CEO Amit Aharoni, CTO Nicolas Meunier, and COO Steve Davis.

It served as the pilot team for the StartUp Chile program, where the founders began initial product development.

In January of 2011 the company returned to its San Francisco based and raised a seed round of funding from Index Ventures, NEA, PROfounders, SV Angel and a collection of angels in the travel and consumer tech industries.

TripAdvisor CEO and co-founder Steve Kaufer says:

“The cruise industry continues to grow in popularity and we are delighted to be able to further strengthen our Cruise Critic business with this move.

“By integrating key elements of CruiseWise and the in-depth knowledge behind it, we will enhance our ability to help travelers find their perfect cruise at a price that suits them with seamless links to our booking partners.”

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Kevin May

About the Writer :: Kevin May

Kevin May was a co-founder and member of the editorial team from September 2009 to June 2017.



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  1. Bill

    StartUp Chile program-Can you explain a little more about this? Doing Chile travel?

    • Thomas Allier

      Start-Up Chile is a global accelerator based in Santiago, Chile. They fund early-stage start-ups from all over the world (not especially from Chile and not necessarily in the travel industry) and it’s all financed by the Chilean government. You can find more information on their website : http://startupchile.org/

  2. Paige

    Congrats Amit, Nicolas and Steve! 🙂


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