In a move to expand its network of specialized Web sites, San Fransisco-based Unexplored, Inc., a provider of technology and distribution services to the specialty travel industry, is acquiring adventure travel Web site, Adventureseek Corporation.
As a part of Unexplored, Adventureseek, also based in San Francisco, will gain access to Unexplored’s Resort Automation technology for booking complex travel itineraries. Financial details were not disclosed.
Adventureseek brings existing relationships with travel suppliers and other strategic partners as well as a broad consumer base as well as a strong management team, says Unexplored President John Gordon.
The Adventureseek management “team brings critical alliances and experience that will further the success of the entire Unexplored business as we continue to pursue our mission to build a comprehensive network of specialized travel sites with bookings powered by our proprietary Resort Automation technology,” he said.
“We are already seeing a considerable amount of consolidation in the online leisure travel industry,” said Adventureseek’s CEO and Co-Founder Pete Wheelan, “and with this strategic move, Adventureseek is proactively allying with a frontrunner in the space.”
Adventureseek currently has relationships with more than 450 adventure travel providers, such as Abercrombie & Kent and Backroads. Plus Unexplored gains the ability to add e-commerce functionality across its range of consumer sites through Adventureseek’s relationship with outfitter REI.
“It is inevitable that a select group of companies will emerge to shape the online leisure travel sector,” noted REI’s vice president of online sales, Matt Hyde. “Unexplored’s acquisition of Adventureseek is an important step towards consolidating many of the best names in adventure travel, and we’re confident that this union will create a dominant force in the industry.”
Unexplored has been building up its technology and travel partnerships since it launched last year. In April, Unexplored acquired ResortAutomation.com, a technology company that specializes in automated call center software for booking vacations and has is now the basis for its technology offerign. This summer, the company entered into a deal with South African National Parks and AfriCam, a popular African Web site, to develop a safari travel site called Safari.net.
Safari.net, which officially launched earlier this month, focuses exclusively on Africa as a destination and aims to bring new travellers to the continent. Its goal is to become an online meeting place for travellers, travel agents, and safari experts, and to offer an increasing selection of interactive features that educate travellers about cultural, conservation, and wildlife issues in Africa.