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Seatfrog picks up £4.5m Series A as rail pax engage with upgrade auctions

Date:2018-07-13 11:29Source:ChinaTravelNews ReadingNumber: Times

In the ten months since going live, Seatfrog has seen a 130% month-on-month increase in revenues. The technology can work with both trains and airlines.

Seatfrog, an app-focussed rail and airline upgrade technology specialist, has confirmed a £4.5 million Series A funding round, led by Octopus Ventures.

When someone books a ticket direct on specified routes, the passenger receives an email from Seatfrog telling them that they can bid for an upgrade. “The 56% conversion rate figure refers to the number of people who open the email, register with us and follow through to make an actual bid,” he explained.

Seatfrog connects into LNER’s reservation system and has a set of proprietary algorithms which it uses to identify which routes and services are likely to get the highest bids, and then also works out the optimum number of seats to make available for an auction. “So it’s not about selling lots of really cheap upgrades, its about maximising the auctions we do carry out, to keep an eye on yield integrity”.

HOWZAT’s co-founder and partner David Soskin, who is on the Seatfrog advisory board, noted that “ancillary revenue strategies across the travel industry are fragmented and there is a lot of untapped potential, particularly in relation to the same-day upgrade process.”

Seatfrog’s internal research outlines the scale of the opportunity in air and rail. It believes that more than 37 million premium seats fly empty annually across the top 30 airlines. And across the top seven European rail providers, that number is 480 million.

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