Montreal-based travel app Hopper has raised a $100 million CAD Series D, bringing its total funding to date to $235 million CAD.
The funding was led by OMERS Ventures. Existing investors Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), Accomplice, Brightspark Ventures, Investissement Québec, BDC Capital IT Venture Fund, and new investor Citi Ventures participated in the round.
“Travel is a $1.3 trillion industry. Online travel is $662 billion, with mobile comprising $264 billion of that,” said Frederic Lalonde, CEO and co-founder of Hopper. “As the world continues to shift from web to mobile — and to apps in particular — an estimated 70 to 90 percent of time spent online is actually taking place on mobile. Of that, 92 percent of all mobile time is spent in apps — and not mobile web. Hopper is in a unique position to become the go-to way to book travel.”
Hopper plans to use the funding to expand its market and invest in its AI capabilities. It also plans to double its headcount; in the last year, Hopper has grown to nearly 200 employees in Montreal, Cambridge, and various offices around the world.
In the past year, Hopper has received over 30 million installs, rolled out its hotels feature to over 20 markets, and is on track to surpass $1 billion in sales. In May, The Canadian Press reported controversy with the company after Air Canada and Westjet said it would sever ties with Hopper after its ‘secret fares’ confused travel groups in suggested it had access to another set of fares. The company apologized.
“Secret Fares is a Hopper-specific marketing strategy and not a unique class of airfare,” a spokesperson told the CBC at the time. A search through the Hopper app shows that Westjet and Air Canada flights are available through the platform.
Hopper said over the past year, it’s experienced 154 percent growth YoY. It credits its ecosystem for enabling its growth; with a closed environment and the ability to have one-on-one conversations with the user, it can use machine learning to learn users’ preferences and make recommendations.
“Mobile travel is growing 20 percent year over year. By continuing to innovate on mobile and ultimately change the way consumers plan and book travel, we believe Hopper has a tremendous opportunity globally,” said Damien Steel, managing partner at OMERS Ventures. “We’re proud to continue supporting Hopper as the company further establishes itself as the leader in mobile travel booking.”
This story was originally published by BetaKit.