Startup of the Week - Tripmule

Some of the most successful business are ones that take away the boring parts of the fun things in life. One business which certainly takes the sting out of one thing many people love - travelling - is Tripmule. We don't all like grappling with flights, connections, and hotels - so they take care of the admin side of your dream trip for you. All you do is pack, and kick back!

We choose one Virgin StartUp company to be featured on Virginstartup.org each week. We ask our startups of the week to deliver the ultimate elevator pitch. What would they say if they had one minute in a lift with Sir Richard Branson? Please answer the questions below, keeping each answer to five sentences max. 

Richard B in lift

Ground to floor 1 – Explain what your business does

Tripmule connects travellers to travel agents via an online travel search platform. Travellers tell us their travel plans and get connected to Travel Agents who "do all the donkey work" in planning and booking the perfect holiday.

Travellers can get the customization, personalization and customer service they deserve when booking a holiday. Oh,and of course, a better price too!

Floor 1 to 2 - Where are you based?

We’re based online so we’re quite global, but our physical presence is in London.

Floor 2 to 3 – What’s the business model?

We offer a free service to travellers, and charge travel agents on a “per-request” basis. Tripmule allows travel agents to run a digital campaign and "pay-per-lead" rather than “pay-per-click”,which is more expensive and not as effective.

Floor 3 to 4 – Who are your competitors?

Arguably we are competing with the large online travel websites such as Booking and Expedia because we are showing customers that travel agents can add value to the travel booking process.

Floor 4 to 5 – What’s your USP?

In an age where technology is taking over everything, we’re bringing in actual people and traditional businesses to the equation. While we have developed a lot on the technology front, Tripmule matches travellers to an actual person who can help plan and book a trip!

Floor 5 to 6 – Where did the idea come from?

When planning a relatively complex trip I was shocked at the difference in prices and lack of service involved during the booking process. I was the one willing to spend so much money, yet I had to do all the hard work finding the best deal. Eventually I chose the "offline" route, and even then I would've preferred travel providers pitching their business to me rather than the other way round.

Floor 6 to 7 – How much funding did you receive from Virgin StartUp?

We were approved for funding of £10,500,and have taken advantage of £6,500 of that so far.

Floor 7 to 8 – How are you going to use it to grow your business?

We're using the funds to complete the development of the platform and continue to sign up travel providers.

Floor 8 to 9 – Who’s your Virgin StartUp Mentor?

Our mentor Jeremy Lee is a serial entrepreneur and co-founder of a company that has invented magnetic wallpapers! Jeremy has a wealth of experience in B2B and B2C, which fits in perfectly with the Tripmule model.

Floor 9 to 10 – What’s your workspace like?

Our workspace consists of a laptop, notepad, telephone and usually a bottle of OJ to keep us going. We prefer being out meeting travel agents as much as possible, and helping them grow their business.

workplace

Floor 10 to 11 – where will your business be in 12 month’s time?

We hope to be in a position where we are a “go-to” service for planning and booking a trip.

To find out more about Tripmule check out their website, or connect on Twitter and Facebook.