Wanderu (company)

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Wanderu
Private
IndustryTravel
Technology
Founded2012
HeadquartersBoston, Massachusetts, United States
Area served
North America
Europe
Key people
Polina Raygorodskaya, CEO
Igor A Bratnikov, COO
Number of employees
25+
Websitewww.wanderu.com

Wanderu is a ground travel search platform and fare aggregator that operates throughout North America and Europe. It partners with bus and train operators to provide a one-stop search and booking platform through its website and mobile app. Wanderu is headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts. The company was founded in 2012 by CEO Polina Raygorodskaya and COO Igor Bratnikov.[1]

History[edit]

Foundation[edit]

Wanderu was founded in 2012 by Polina Raygorodskaya and Igor Bratnikov.[1] At the time when the idea for Wanderu was conceived, Raygorodskaya and Bratnikov were part of GreenXC, a nationwide campaign intended to raise awareness for national parks and forests throughout the United States.[2] Aiming to promote sustainable forms of transportation, the group chose ride-shares as their main form of travel hitting a snag when one of their ride-shares cancelled and they had to find a bus to get to their next destination. Since no direct bus served the route, they had no way of finding which buses could get them where they needed to go or even find the closest station to where they were. Realizing the void in the market, they set out to build Wanderu.[3]

In May 2013, Wanderu launched a private beta version of Wanderu. In August 2013, the company raised $2.45 million in a seed round of funding from a group of investors, including Alta Ventures Mexico, Wasabi Ventures, Drummond Road Capital, former Greyhound CEO Craig Lentzsch, Jeffrey Clarke, Bill Kaplan, Semyon Dukach, and Oliver Thylmann.[1]

On August 12, 2013, Wanderu.com was officially launched to the public, covering bus and train travel within the Northeast.[4]

Growth in North America[edit]

In May 2014, Wanderu announced a partnership with Greyhound, the largest bus travel provider in the United States. As a result, Wanderu acquired nationwide coverage.[5]

In November 2014, Wanderu completed a Series A round of funding, raising $5.6 million. The round featured 10 investors, including Alta Ventures Mexico, 500 Startups, Barbara Corcoran Venture Partners, Compound, Drummond Road Capital, Marc Bell Ventures, Klingenstein, Fields & Co, Craig Lentzsch, Brad Feld, and Kiril Bensonoff.[1]

In February 2015, Wanderu released a smartphone application for iOS devices, followed by the release an Android version in March 2015.[6][7]

In April 2015, Wanderu signed a partnership with Amtrak, the largest passenger inter-city railroad service in the United States. As a result, Wanderu’s coverage increased to over 90% of the U.S. that is reachable by ground.[8]

In November 2015, Wanderu partnered with bus companies Grupo Senda and Tufesa to offer trips to multiple destinations across Mexico, as well as options for cross-border travel between Mexico and the United States.[9]

In February 2016, Wanderu announced a partnership with VIA Rail, an intercity passenger rail service in Canada.[10]

Expansion to Europe[edit]

In January 2017, Wanderu expanded into Europe, launching service to more than 1,000 destinations across more than 20 countries, including Germany, France, Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom, among other places.[11][12]

In Europe, Wanderu partners with some of the biggest bus and train travel providers, including FlixBus, Ouibus, and National Express. About 160 additional carriers are currently being integrated into the search engine.[11][12]

Recognition[edit]

Wanderu was a finalist of MassChallenge in the summer of 2012[13] and an original member of PayPal's Start Tank in Boston.[14]

In February 2013, Wanderu won the South by Southwest Accelerator Grand Prize in the Innovative Web Technology category.[15]

In February 2015, Wanderu a top 3 finalist at Sir Richard Branson’s Extreme Tech Challenge.[16]

TIME named the Wanderu app as one of its favorite iPhone apps,[17] USA Today named it one of the top budget travel apps of 2015,[18] and CNet called it one of the best apps for booking travel.[19]

In April 2015, Polina Raygorodskaya and Igor Bratnikov were featured in Inc. Magazine’s annual Top 30 Under 30 Coolest Entrepreneurs list.[20]

In October 2015, Polina Raygorordskaya was featured by Fortune as one of 40 Under 40 Women to Watch.[21]

In January 2016, Polina Raygorodskaya and Igor Bratnikov were featured in Forbes’ annual 30 Under 30 list in the Consumer Tech category.[22]

In November 2016, Inc. Magazine named Wanderu one of the top 15 companies of 2016.[23]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "Wanderu | CrunchBase Profile". Crunchbase.com. Retrieved 2013-04-30.
  2. ^ Polina says:. "USDA Blog » US Forest Service Helps Young Adults Bring Awareness to National Forests Though a Cross-Country Adventure". Blogs.usda.gov. Retrieved 2013-04-30.
  3. ^ Michonski, Laura (2012-11-07). "Is the Golden Age of Ground Transportation Near? | Budget Travel's Blog | Travel Deals, Travel Tips, Travel Advice, Vacation Ideas". Budgettravel.com. Retrieved 2013-04-30.
  4. ^ Perez, Sarah. "Just In Time For The Car-Less Generation, Bus And Train Ticket Aggregator Wanderu Raises $5.6M Series A". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  5. ^ Taub, Alexander. "Travel Startup Wanderu Lands A Partnership With Greyhound". Forbes. Retrieved 2017-02-03.
  6. ^ Perez, Sarah. "Wanderu Lets You Book Bus And Train Tickets From Your iPhone". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  7. ^ Plautz, Jessica. "Wanderu launches Android app for bus and train booking in the U.S." Mashable. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  8. ^ "Bus and train travel comparison site Wanderu announces partnership with Amtrak". USA TODAY. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  9. ^ "Wanderu Expands Partnership with Turimex Internacional - Wanderu". Wanderu. 2015-11-18. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  10. ^ "Wanderu Partners with Leading Canadian Train Travel Provider VIA Rail - Wanderu". Wanderu. 2016-02-10. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  11. ^ a b "Find Cheap Train and Bus Fares Across Europe". Travel + Leisure. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  12. ^ a b "Bus & Train Travel Search Platform Wanderu Launches in Europe". Wanderu. 2017-01-25. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  13. ^ "Wanderu". MassChallenge. 2011-09-22. Retrieved 2013-04-30.
  14. ^ Home Job Board Blogs Deals Networking Calendar Directory (2013-03-01). "Recap from PayPal & StubHub's Office Opening Event [slideshow". VentureFizz. Retrieved 2013-04-30.
  15. ^ Alspach, Kyle. "Wanderu wins at SXSW for Innovative Web". www.bizjournals.com. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  16. ^ "Wanderu named finalist in Richard Branson startup challenge". www.bizjournals.com. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  17. ^ "These Are Our Favorite iPhone Apps of the Week". Time. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  18. ^ "10Best Readers' Choice: Best of budget travel". USA TODAY. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  19. ^ "Best apps for booking travel | The Download Blog - CNET Download.com". download.cnet.com. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  20. ^ "The Bus Business and How Wanderu Is Getting Millennials on Board". Inc.com. 2017-04-22. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  21. ^ "Women to Watch". Fortune. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  22. ^ "30 Under 30 2016: Consumer Tech". Forbes. Retrieved 2017-02-01.
  23. ^ "This Startup Wants to Drag Bus Travel Out of the Dark Ages--and It Just Might". Inc.com. 2016-11-16. Retrieved 2017-02-01.

External links[edit]