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Velocity Ventures rallies travel and hospitality industry to recalibrate and strengthen “heartware” to address sector-specific pain points

Corporate Partners Program offers new approach for the travel ecosystem to build an open culture for innovation

SINGAPORE – Velocity Ventures, Southeast Asia’s leading travel and hospitality tech investor has announced a subscription-based Corporate Partners Program (CPP) so that corporates in the travel and hospitality sector can tap into 1,000s of start-ups to identify and co-invest in innovative tech solutions. Focusing across 5 technology verticals: Food & Beverage, Travel Experiences, Accommodation, Transportation/ Mobility and Travel Services, the VC firm is adding this new offering to extend opportunities for partners to gain innovation insight, work with traveltech startups on pilots, and make co-investments and/or acquisitions.

Traditionally, airlines, hotels, tour operators, and online travel agencies often operate as separate entities in silos, focusing on their own interests, resulting in missed opportunities for innovation. Velocity Ventures’ innovation program will be international in reach while focused on Southeast Asia appropriate solutions and will enable travel and hospitality corporates a pragmatic way to benefit from a unique portfolio support eco-system while helping startups to access industry and innovation professionals.

Velocity Ventures’ CPP aims to help corporates build an open culture of innovation while offering them flexibility across three different subscription tiers: Lite, Core and Pro.

The program will create value in a variety of ways for corporate partners allowing them to:

  • Access 1,000’s of start-ups providing innovative solutions to sector-specific pain points
  • Gain insights on product offerings, founders and viability before engaging start-ups
  • Compare product solutions from different start-ups
  • Keep track of innovation and disruptive trends via bespoke Velocity Ventures’ events and reports
  • Co-invest with Velocity Ventures in best of breed start-ups
  • Drive innovation and cultural change by engaging with start-ups via pilots and trials
  • Create and outsourced corporate venture capital operation by allocating a separate pool of capital and retaining control on all investment decisions.

Operating since 2020, Velocity Ventures has backed startups like Aigens, Carbon Click, Food Market Hub, Zuzu Hospitality and ZYTLYN that have collectively reached US $2.5 bn Gross Merchandise Value (GMV), achieving a year-over-year growth of 74% from 2021 to 2022. Current corporate partners base includes companies across the travel and hospitality ecosystem such as Etihad Airways, Lufthansa Innovation Hub, Goldbell Group, The Lo & Behold Group, Old Chang Kee, RB Capital, Global Hotel Alliance and Klook . The firm also works closely with accelerators like Singapore Tourism Accelerator by Singapore Tourism Board (STB), Korean Tourism Office (KTO) and Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), and reviews over 400 travel-tech startups annually.

Velocity Ventures is founded by A. Patrick Imbardelli, ex-CEO of the Pan Pacific Hotels and InterContinental Hotels Group (APAC), and Nicholas Cocks, a successful entrepreneur turned professional investor. Collectively, the management team of Velocity Ventures have over thirty years of investing experience and US $2.2 bn+ of combined transaction and investment portfolio experience. Within its focus sectors, Velocity Ventures invests in growth stage start-ups (Seed, Series A) and tech startups seeking to expand their global footprint in Southeast Asia.

“With Velocity Ventures’ Corporate Partners Program, we want to bring together founders and corporates, who are deeply passionate about the innovation transformation of the travel and hospitality sector. To drive impactful change, investments and partnerships are the twin catalysts and the invaluable “heartware” that is much needed to help travel and hospitality corporates recalibrate in this new era of accelerated digitalisation. With our deep industry and nuanced product knowledge, our corporate partners can keep their finger on the pulse of technology solutions that can help solve their specific pain points and reap the long-term benefits with potential opportunities for strategic acquisitions,” said Nicholas Cocks, Managing Partner and Co-Founder, Velocity Ventures.

Key challenges and priorities identified by Velocity Ventures that require attention include managing labour shortages, leveraging digitalization data, decarbonisation and sustainability, forecasting demand, managing technology options and adapting to evolving distribution models.

Beyond making capital investments, Velocity Venture’s Corporate Partners Program will offer unprecedented access to 1000+ startups providing innovative solutions for sector-specific pain points. Velocity Ventures’ investment team conducts a proprietary “6 Factor Analysis” due diligence assessment before actively engaging any startup and this data will be shared with all members of the Corporate Partner Program.

Through Velocity Venture’s bespoke events, corporates can keep track of innovation and disruptive trends and work closely with selected startups to identify opportunities to replace legacy processes and close the gap for operational efficiencies.

In addition to start-up access, the Corporate Partners Program offers corporates in the travel and hospitality sector the opportunity to establish an outsourced Corporate Venture Capital (CVC) unit via a managed pool of capital.

Co-Founder & Chief Editor - TravelDailyNews Media Network | + Articles

Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales. She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.

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