UK start-up travel website Top10.com has secured $8 million in funding to help expand in Europe.
The new investment round will be used to build on the 14-strong London based team, with an emphasis on growing its engineering talent, as well as expanding into new European markets this year.
The cash injection comes from Balderton Capital, with participation from existing investors Accel Partners, Forward Partners and Idealab.
Top10 evaluates millions of hotel data points – including review scores, popularity, location and price – to identify the best properties for customers in any destination in the world.
Instead of having to scroll through hundreds of available hotels and user reviews, Top10 locates the best 10.
Top10’s ‘hotel shortlists’ aggregate content from services like Foursquare and Google Street View to make its results informative and easy to digest.
The service also compares live prices from major booking sites including Booking.com, Expedia and LateRooms.
This has helped the company grow rapidly over the last 12 months, and it is now driving more than $1million a month in hotel bookings.
Top10 started in 2011 as a recommendation platform focused on music, entertainment and travel, with its services including a Spotify app for collaborative music playlists.
In late 2012, the company narrowed its focus onto the hotel market and launched Top10.com a year ago.
Co-founder and chief executive Tom Leathes said: “We’re thrilled to be working with Balderton Capital and our existing investors to help us build a better way to book the right hotel.
“Hotel booking and travel review sites contain an overwhelming amount of information.
“Top10.com cuts through this noise by simplifying the whole experience. We limit results to just 10 hotels whilst providing a wealth of relevant information in a bite-sized format.
“Our focus on mobile means customers get a great experience no matter what device they’re using. Our growth from zero to $1 million per month in bookings shows that users love our smarter, more personalised approach.”
Daniel Waterhouse, a partner at Balderton Capital, added: “Finding the perfect hotel online remains a frustrating and time-consuming process for holidaymakers and business travelers alike.
“The Top10 team are developing new technology systems to confront these issues which we believe could transform the online travel booking industry.
“We love investing in businesses where complex technical challenges are tackled behind the scenes, whilst leaving customers with a simple and satisfying experience, both online and on mobile, which leads to almost effortless transactions. Tom and the team are an exceptional set of repeat entrepreneurs.”
Waterhouse joins the Top10.com board alongside Sonali De Rycker of Accel Partners.