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A group of travel industry stalwarts is aiming to capitalise on the popularity of crowdfunding,offering agents and operators an innovative way for clients to collaborate and pay for holidays.
They have launched Payzella, which enables customers to create gift trips and manage groups andpayments via social media.
Payzella is headed by Richard Turner, formerly of Comtec, and Tony Evans, chief executive of tprofile, which built the technology.
Fellow founders include Comtec chairman Simon Powell and former Thomas Cook director Richard Calvert, chief executive of Destination Weddings.
Private equity-backed Payzella’s technology can be embedded in partner websites to promote funds via email and social media.
Turner claimed it “will transform group booking options via just three simple steps”.
Destination Weddings and operator Leisuretime are the first to sign up and Turner said he was in talks with other players.
“There’s a whole generation that likes sharing and virally playing a part in helping someone crowdfund. It’s a different way of transacting and contacting people and it’s really popular.”
Payzella is expected to appeal to customers seeking contributions for expensive trips such as honeymoons or organisers of group ski holidays or stag and hen dos.
Turner added Payzella allows agents visibility of forward sales and funds going into the bank, plusupsell opportunities.
Leisuretime managing director Ceri Johnson predicted Payzella “will soon become a must-have app for the entire travel industry”.
Last week, rival firm Make It Social revealed new backers and technology aimed at travel firms.
To mark the launch, Travel Weekly and Travolution readers can win a Payzella fund by contributing £1. Payzella has kicked things off by donating £1,000. The winner will be invited to WTM in November. Entrants will be offered Payzella set-up for free. To enter, contribute £1 at payzella.com/travel-weekly