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Viator secures $6 million

Viator has announced the completion of a $6 million cash injection, led by Carlyle Venture Partners.  Existing investor Technology Venture Partners also participated.
Viator has appointed a new president, Barry Seidenberg, to lead the company in plans to diversify their supplier and destination offering. The former CMO of Preview Travel, will head a Marketing and Business Development team and join CEO Rod Cuthbert in the company’s new San Francisco headquarters.
“Barrie’s experience at Preview Travel will be of enormous value to us.  Combined with Carlyle’s investment, we have an opportunity to build on that experience and our early category leadership to create a business which can become both the leading distributor and the leading online retailer in this market sector,” said Viator CEO Rod Cuthbert.

“This is a multi-billion dollar market that’s clearly under-served.  Consumers already book their flights, hotels and cars online, and destination activities are the logical next step.  We plan to satisfy that demand directly through our own site, but also as the best partner for hotel, airline and retail sites that want to offer activities to their own customers,” said Seidenberg.

Viator will expand its partnership program, which features industry leaders Priceline, Hotwire, British Airways, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, Qantas, and others

The Viator investment is Carlyle’s third in the online travel sector, following online retailer C-Trip and business travel specialist Egencia, which was acquired by IAC/InterActiveCorp in 2004. 

“Viator already has a market leading selection of suppliers and affiliates, and attracts a global base of consumers, with over 30% of its bookings from consumers outside the U.S.  We aim to build on that global capability through the establishment of a significant U.S. sales and marketing presence as well as continued investment in building the premier destination on the web for consumers looking to plan their vacation activities,” said Carlyle Managing Director Allan Thygesen, who has joined the company’s board of directors.