Aussie travel startup finds its niche.
Leezair was launched as a web application for travellers and locals in Australia, with this pilot launch being followed by the Leezair marketplace and mobile app on the 26th of November.
The apps are the first of their kind in the Australian market. They are harnessing the power of technology to help push forward an industry that has been left behind.
Calvin Lee, Head of Operations and co-founder, said the tourism industry has long been aware of the unmet consumer need for a mobile-based platform that facilitates last minute bookings in real time. Lee said that no one has been able to successfully work out the solution.
“Mobile bookings have been growing by 1% every quarter in Australia since well before 2012. This combined with the fact that over 50% of bookings are made within seven days of the activity date means Leezair has a real opportunity here.”
Leezair is the first of its kind, un-curated, mobile led experience that uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to predict user behaviour and personalise their travel itinerary. The unique value of Leezair, is that when you arrive at your destination, the app knows exactly where you are, what activities you can do around you, and whether they are suitable for the weather conditions right now. This effective use of artificial intelligence and machine learning means that travellers can now spend less time searching for things to do, and more time experiencing.
Since Leezair’s first round of funding, the startup has employed 11 team members and holds the largest catalogue of activities and experiences in the Asia Pacific region. The web app holds over 50,000 scenic tours, rides, lessons and adventure activities. Leezair co-founder Enguerrand Vidor attributes the fast growth to the team and the support of its well-known partners and investors.
“We wouldn’t have hit the milestones we have if it weren’t for our industry supporters. It’s just wonderful to be recognised and supported by Tourism Australia. It feels as though we have been given a head start thanks to the support of Clinton Capital Partners, Allan Moss, John Grill and other well-known investors,” Vidor said.
Leezair was founded by Vidor in 2014. Vidor’s interest in the startup scene began during his time as an Entrepreneur in Residence and CRM Manager for online fashion retailer The Iconic at Rocket Internet.
Vidor said, “It’s my mission to bring the learnings, failures and successes realised when launching The Iconic to the tourism industry through Leezair.”
Recent research on consumer spending and booking behaviour demonstrates that most travellers prefer to book activities last minute once they arrive at their chosen destination, even though the current system still pushes them to book in advance. This presents an enormous opportunity for tech savvy travel agents in a $117 billion dollar Australian market. Leezair’s attention and technology is focused on gaining a minimum 1% market share of the $15 billion spent on tours and activities.
Vidor said the tourism industry is being held back by slow moving agents resisting technology, high commission rates and accessibility barriers.
“Consumers have not just moved online, they have moved to mobile. The travel industry has tried to apply the flights and airlines model to tours and activities, but activity providers cannot keep up with the high commission rates and competition. This has left the market ripe, but suppliers dry.”
The web app is the first release in the Leezair suite. It will soon be followed by the launch of Leezair’s mobile app on the 26th of November, 2016. Leezair is applying advanced technology to create a predictive platform that is tailored to each user’s travelling style, while suggesting things to do based on weather, friend reviews and real time availability.
Vidor said that the web application is a very small piece of the grand vision for Leezair.
“Our mobile app will bring the technology that is used by Uber, Tinder and Spotify to the tourism industry by using artificial intelligence to understand the individual and offer them unique travel suggestions.”
The apps Leezair is creating are expected to make it easier for travellers to experience the world around them by bringing them closer to activities they are likely to enjoy.
The location-aware and last minute functionality will encourage locals to become more involved and active in their own surroundings. The startup expects locals will welcome the Leezair app into their free time and boost local tourism.
Visit www.leezair.com for more information.