Vaud based startup Smeetz obtains a CHF 200,000 FIT Digital Growth by EHL loan
Smeetz, a startup based in Lausanne, has just been awarded a CHF 200,000 FIT Digital Growth by EHL loan. The company has developed an innovative online booking platform, where activity organizers can market their events, manage reservations and sell tickets.
If a dance school wanted to sell discounted last-minute tickets for a show, for example, or a yoga instructor felt like advertising a Tuesday morning class, they had no easy way of doing so – until now. The online booking platform developed by Smeetz enables activity organizers to carry out sales and marketing tasks and manage reservations through an intuitive, easy-to-use interface. And a new feature lets organizers implement dynamic pricing strategies, like those used by hotels and airlines. This feature employs sophisticated data analysis techniques and is the first of its kind in the industry. Smeetz will operate from the EHL Innovation Village.
By giving activity organizers the possibility to use dynamic pricing, Smeetz opens the door to a host of new opportunities. Such differentiated pricing methods have already proven effective for boosting revenue in other industries. Recent adopters include ski resort operators, who use dynamic pricing to sell discounted tickets for ski lifts when certain conditions are met.
Smeetz’s algorithm can adjust prices in real time within a range set by the activity organizer; other variables can also be entered such as the timetable and number of participants. That saves precious time for organizers and lets them make optimal use of their venues, target new market segments and maximize their revenues. The algorithm even takes the weather into account.
Smeetz makes money from subscription fees as well as a commission it charges on sales carried out through its platform. The company is initially targeting major event and activity organizers in Switzerland; some 220 such firms are already customers, including the WTA Ladies Open, D! Club, the Chocolate Festival in Lausanne and the Villars-Ollon Afterseason Festival. It hopes to eventually sign up all of the 40,000 small businesses in the Swiss tourism industry.
Smeetz will use the CHF 200,000 FIT Digital Growth by EHL loan to hire additional sales staff and prepare for a Series A fundraising round, with a view to stepping up its business development internationally.
Alexandre Martin, co-founder and CEO | alexandre.martin(a)smeetz.com
Lara Rossi, communication Innovaud and FIT | lara.rossi(a)innovaud.ch