Off & Away, a Seattle-based auction site where travelers bid for luxurious accommodations and related goods, said that it has raised an undisclosed amount of Series A funding from Madrona Venture Group.
Off & Away, a new website where travelers bid to win unbelievable experiences at incredible values, officially launched to the public today at TechCrunch Disrupt. Through its unique auction platform, Off & Away helps the everyday consumer gain access to exceptional travel experiences typically reserved for celebrities and heads of state. Today’s first auctions feature hotel suite experiences at The Pierre New York and The Wynn Las Vegas. In the coming weeks, Off & Away will auction additional experiences at world-class hotels from brands such as The London NYC, THE Hotel in Las Vegas, The Intercontinental Chicago, Chambers Hotel in New York, and many more.
Off & Away is founded by former Amazon.com and travel industry executives from Expedia, Orbitz, and Alaska Airlines. The company recently raised Series A funding led by Madrona Venture Group, the venture capital firm behind Amazon.com, Farecast.com (now Bing Travel) and VacationSpot (now a part of Expedia).
“Travelers dream about staying in amazingly luxurious suites, but for most, these suites are entirely out of reach,” said Doug Aley, CEO of Off & Away. “Off & Away is about giving travelers the opportunity to book an experience of a lifetime, experiences that in many cases aren’t even available online.”
In addition to the consumer benefits, Off & Away provides luxury hotel brands with a unique new marketing channel that drives incremental bookings and showcases the best their properties have to offer, all without brand or rate dilution.
How it Works
To participate in Off & Away auctions, travelers purchase bid packs that they use to bid on suite experiences. The traveler who places the last bid when the auction clock expires, wins an amazing hotel stay for up to 90 percent off normal rates. Travelers who do not win the auction can apply their used bids towards booking another room at that hotel or any hotel in Off & Away’s large network. For an in-depth description of how Off & Away auctions work, please visit www.offandaway.com/site/how-it-works.page.
About Off & Away
Off & Away offers exceptional travel experiences to its customers in new, fun and unique ways. The company believes that people deserve to experience more when they travel and when they shop for travel. Off & Away works with its premiere hotel partners to provide these experiences.
Off & Away was founded by former Amazon.com and travel industry executives, and is backed by Madrona Venture Group, the venture capital firm behind Amazon.com, Farecast.com (now Bing Travel) and VacationSpot (now a part of Expedia).
For more information and to see how Off & Away will change how people shop for travel, visit www.offandaway.com, “Like” the company on Facebook at www.facebook.com/OffAndAway, and follow the company on twitter @offnaway.
About TechCrunch Disrupt
TechCrunch Disrupt (http://disrupt.techcrunch.com), May 24-26 2010, at 570 Washington Street, is TechCrunch’s inaugural conference in New York attracting over 1,500 leading technology innovators and investors and over 150 new startups. The format combines top thought-leader discussions with new product and company launches. Morning executive discussions debate the most timely disruptions in media, advertising and technology. Afternoons host the Startup Battlefield where 25 new companies will launch for the first time on stage, selected to present from more than 500 applications received from around the world. Another 100 early-stage startups will exhibit in Startup Alley. TechCrunch will award a $50,000 grand prize along with other award recognitions at the conclusion of the conference.
TechCrunch (www.techcrunch.com) is a leading technology media network, dedicated to obsessively profiling and reviewing new Internet products and companies. Founded in 2005, TechCrunch and its network of websites reach over 8 million unique visitors and more than 25 million page views per month. TechCrunch operates a global network of websites including dedicated properties in Europe and Japan as well as specialized industry websites including MobileCrunch, CrunchGear, and TechCrunchIT. TechCrunch’s CrunchBase is the leading, open database about start-up companies, people and investors. In addition to Disrupt, TechCrunch hosts other conferences and events, including The Crunchies Awards and various meet-ups worldwide serving as community platforms for industry conversation and collaboration.
About Madrona Venture Group
Madrona Venture Group (www.madrona.com) primarily invests in early-stage technology companies in the Pacific Northwest and has played a role in some of the region’s most successful technology ventures. The firm is investing Fund IV across the information technology spectrum, including consumer Internet, software, digital media and advertising, and wireless. Madrona currently manages nearly $700 million and was an early investor in companies such as Amazon.com, Sharebuilder, Farecast.com (now Bing Travel) and Isilon Systems, to name a few.