Liftopia Raises $5 Million to Further Expand SAAS Platform and Marketplace for Ski Industry
September 27, 2013
Liftopia, Inc. today announced it has raised $5 million in financing led by Industry Ventures with participation from new investors ru-Net, Thayer Ventures, Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff, Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff, Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman, and Walter Winshall. Existing investors First Round Capital, Lowercase Capital, SK Ventures, Xandex and former Expedia CEO Erik Blachford also participated. This brings Liftopia’s total capital raised to $7.9 million.
The company will use the new capital to grow its team and accelerate the development of technology products for the ski industry. This includes its proprietary commerce, business intelligence and mobile solutions, which help ski resorts optimize revenue and improve the overall consumer experience.
Liftopia operates Liftopia.com, the largest online and mobile marketplace for ski lift tickets and other mountain activities where consumers can save up to 85 percent on advance-purchase tickets, and Cloud Store, a software-as-a-service (SaaS) commerce and revenue management solution for ski resort operators.
“Liftopia is working hard to solve problems for the ski industry operators and help them leverage technology and data to make skiing and snowboarding more accessible for consumers,” said Evan Reece, co-founder and CEO of Liftopia. “We’ve been fortunate to have a phenomenal group of investors supporting us over the years, and we’re excited to add this esteemed new group to the team – all of whom recognize the innovative technology Liftopia has developed for the ski industry and the opportunity ahead.”
“It’s rare to find a company that’s making such a positive impact and changing distribution fundamentals on a sector like Liftopia has done for ski. Industry Ventures is excited to invest and help the team accelerate development and marketing,” said Roland Reynolds, managing director at Industry Ventures. “We are incredibly impressed with the Liftopia team and believe they are the market leader in an increasingly important sector.”
The Liftopia platform is powered by a proprietary business intelligence and revenue management system that makes automated dynamic pricing easy. This has helped evolve the ski industry to adopt more control over advance-purchase pricing, much like airlines and hotels have done for decades, to most efficiently price through periods of highly variable demand.
More than 250 resorts in North America now utilize the Liftopia platform. On average, revenue generated for participating resorts on Liftopia in the 2012-2013 season more than tripled year-over-year. And, skiers and boarders also benefit. During the same period, consumers saved an average 30 percent off tickets purchased in advance via Liftopia and partner resorts compared to typical walk-up window rates.
Based in San Francisco’s financial district, Liftopia is hiring across all departments, including engineering, design, product, partner strategy, marketing, and customer support. The company has doubled its team in the past year and currently has 35 employees with plans to grow to more than 60 over the next 12 months.