Shijiebang's "Trip Planning Assistant" Launches the 3.0 Era of Online Travelling Outbound Travel Website Shijiebang Announced Series A Funding Led by Yahoo Founder Jerry Yang and Two VC Funds
BEIJING, Nov. 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Shijiebang.com, a leading travel platform linking Chinese outbound travelers to local tour operators overseas, announced the launch of Trip Planning Assistant (TPA) to assist travelers with detailed planning of itinerary crafted by local travel experts.
Shijiebang.com also announced the completion of its Series A round financing, led by angel investors such as Mr. Jerry Yang, the founder of Yahoo! Inc. as well as Fosun ZhongKun Capital Group and ChinaRock Capital Management. Since the inception at the end of of 2012, Shijiebang has attracted nearly $10 million U.S. dollars during Series A. Mr. Jerry Yang, Executive Director Mr. Jun Wang from Fosun ZhongKun Capital, Founding Partner Mr. Chun Ding from ChinaRock Capital and Founder & CEO Mr. Dennis Zhang from Shijiebang gave their speeches expressing the satisfaction and expectation of Shijiebang during the conference.
"Over the past few years, we've seen the strong demand of Chinese outbound travel. Chinese outbound travelers are increasingly interested in FIT travel; at the same time, they are struggling with the scarcity of local travel information, the high-cost of tailor-made tours, and the lack of customization in large tour groups. With the launch of our TPA,Shijiebang strives to become the one-stop, FIT travel platform for Chinese outbound travelers. This product provides free itinerary customization and consulting services, creating a platform for travelers to browse and choose itinerary-specific travel products at a competitive price to large group travel ensuring the unique experience that large travel group can never match," said Dennis Zhang, the co-founder of Shijiebang.com.
TPA brings new travel experience in 3 ways:
- Simple and fast organization of traveler's needs under 2 minutes. The user-friendly TPA saves users from browsing and filtering large amounts of travel information. Users can now simply go to www.shijiebang.com and click to start the TPA and simply answer 8 travel-related questions. Within 2 minutes, TPA helps users organize all their key travel needs.
- Travel expertise from local experts in the destination countries. Shijiebang.com has thousands of travel experts, 80% of whom actually reside in the travel destinations. Shijiebang firmly believes in the value and quality of information that locals can offer. After users submit their itinerary planning requests, Shijiebang sends the requests to the travel experts based on the geographical information. Within 48 hours, a detailed and most up-to-date customized itinerary with tour product recommendations is then delivered to the users. Users can even follow up with the travel experts at a later point with questions or comments.
- Accurate but flexible itinerary presentation with specific travel products. Shijiebang.com presents the customized itinerary in 4 visual forms including the following components: 1) "Summary" outlines the key travel information in the itinerary; 2) "Itinerary Detail" introduces the in-depth destination information, tips, and suggested activities; 3) "Map" gives a visual presentation of the complete and daily itinerary routes; 4) "Daily Schedule" helps plan out the day; 5) "Price Calculator" assists with budget planning; 6) "Suggested Travel Product" enables users to browse and select a wide variety of travel products related to their customized itinerary.
Living standards have improved significantly thanks to the fast economic development of China. As a result, leisure travel, especially outbound leisure travel, has become a mega trend among Chinese tourists. However, due to new regulations on the travel industry which no longer allows Chinese travel agencies to mandatorily incorporate shopping into group travel, prices are likely to increase in the near future. The demand for outbound leisure FIT travel is on a fast rising trend. However, there is yet to emerge a comprehensive solutions provider to satisfy the associated needs amidst this rising demand. Shijiebang.com, with its launch of Trip Planning Assistant, will provide a comprehensive solution.
Mr. Dai Bin, Dean of China Tourism Academy, has delivered the opening remark. 11 representatives from tourism bureaus of overseas destinations, including Deutsche Zentrale fur Touismus, VisitBritain, Scandinavian Tourist Board, Brand USA, Canadian Tourism Commission, Atout France, Switzerland Tourism, TURESPANA, Netherlands Board of Tourism & Conventions, Greek National Tourism Organisation, Tourism Flanders, also attended the conference. In addition, hundreds of media agencies from various verticals including tourism, finance, technology and lifestyle joined the product launch conference.
Travelers interested in learning more about Shijiebang's TPA may visit www.shijiebang.com.
For more information on Shijiebang's product promotion release conference, please visit http://www.shijiebang.com/u11191/blog-9917/?rf=new-home
Shijiebang, an outbound travel service platform, strives to provide customized, cost-effective and high quality tourism services to Chinese outbound travelers. The mission of Shijiebang can be summarized as "free, customization, self-service." It creates an e-commerce platform where travelers plan customized itinerary with the help of local travel experts, shop a wide variety of carefully curated travel products, interact directly with local tour service providers, etc. It provides outbound travelers with a complete new experience throughout the process of FIT traveling experience. Currently, Shijiebang offers up to 16 categories of travel products including air tickets, visa application, hotel reservation, insurance, etc. It has signed cooperation agreements with hundreds of travel merchants across 20 countries worldwide.
About Shijiebang's Current Investors
Entrepreneur Jerry Yang co-founded Yahoo! Inc. in 1995 and served on the Board of Directors and as a key member of the executive management team until January 2012. While at Yahoo he led a number of initiatives, including two of the biggest investments in the Internet: Yahoo Japan and Alibaba Group. Yang holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering from Stanford University. He is widely recognized as a visionary and pioneer in the internet technology sector, and was named one of the top 100 innovators in the world under the age of 35 by MIT Technology Review in 1999. Mr. Yang served as a director of Yahoo Japan Corporation (TSE:4689) and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. until January 2012; and a director of Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO) from July 2000 to November 2012. Yang currently works with and invests in technology entrepreneurs through AME Cloud Ventures, his innovation investment firm. He is also a Board Observer for Lenovo. Yang and his wife, Akiko Yamazaki, are well known philanthropists who focus on higher education, conservation and the arts. Yang is currently on Stanford University's Board of Trustees, where he is a Vice-Chair; and is on the board of the Monterey Peninsula Foundation.
Fosun Kunzhong Capital
Fosun Kunzhong Capital, the venture capital investment platform of Fosun Capital Group, is dedicated to investing in early to growth stage technology companies. It currently has offices in Beijing, Shenzhen, and Shanghai. Fosun's area of investment interest covers internet and media, modern services, and clean energy. Fosun Capital Group strives to be a global investment institution leveraging on its competitiveness of "Combining China's growth momentum with global resources."
ChinaRock Capital Management
ChinaRock Capital Management is a China focused VC firm based in San Francisco, California. We have built professional investment team in Shanghai, Beijing, and Hong Kong since 2004. It seeks to invest early stage startups, and its investments widely cover the TMT, consumer, information technology, business service, healthcare, new energy verticals. ChinaRock is also honored of being the one of the angel investors in many great companies, such as Youku, Ehouse, Allyes, Yingli Green energy, etc.