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The first holiday yachting price comparison platform.
The booking.com of yachting holidays
Sir Stelios, the founder of easyGroup, participates as the lead investor in the first aggregator platform in the holiday yachting market, easyBoat.com.
Managed by Greek entrepreneurs and Founders Alex Nastos and Simos Lalagos, this new tech venture aspires to become the go-to online comparison site when looking to charter a yacht anywhere in the world.
With already good market traction this season, easyBoat is a scalable solution to problems prevalent in the space.
Currently, there are multiple brokers working in silos, forcing consumers to search many sites to find the best price.
Moreover, a highly fragmented online presence of brokers breeds market inefficiency:
A single source of truth
easyBoat.com provides price transparency by comparing charter prices for the same class of boats offered by multiple operators.
Just like Skyscanner for flights or Booking.com for hotels, easyBoat saves both time and money on yacht charter bookings. The idea stems from the values of easyGroup brands giving simplicity and affordability to first-time charterers as well as experienced sailors.
easyBoat earns a 12% commission on each successful booking through the platform.
easyBoat draws its listings through API integrations with different brokers and filters the results to ensure the accuracy of the information. The platform attracts significant organic traffic by ranking highly on search engines such as Google through Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and paid advertising campaigns.
The marketplace nature of the platform, creates an opportunity to scale the business, adding on ancillary services like in-platform advertising and sponsored listings. Once developed, these services will have nearly zero running costs hence a strong impact on net profits.
Annual growth of 7%!
The global yacht charter market was valued at 15.2 billion euros in 2018 and is projected to reach 27 billion by 2027, a compound annual growth rate of 7%.
easyBoat’s target audience is summer vacationers who choose to holiday at sea, typically families, groups of friends or couples looking for an alternative tourism experience.
In recent years, the yacht charter market has experienced an acceleration in growth due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While the hospitality industry was suffering from strict lockdowns across the world, yachting offered an alternative and safer holiday experience.
At the same time, the market enjoyed a positive trend of the young generation looking for “experiences” over traditional holidays. Younger travellers, Millennials and Gen-Z, are expected to largely contribute to the growth in the market as they account for a large proportion of the addressable market.
easyBoat has been successfully achieving milestones on its strategy roadmap. The company initially began operations under the name “BoatRadar”, but after the license agreement with the easyGroup, the company registered a new holding company in Cyprus.
In March 2022, the platform was officially launched and began serving its first customers. The experience of early adopters and feedback received so far will be used to adapt the final product.
The next step is to roll out a growth plan before the next season, with the capital from pre-seed funding.
In the second phase of development, easyBoat will develop its own dedicated mobile app, expand its offering beyond the Mediterranean and roll out new features that will unlock additional revenue streams.
The first and only aggregator in the space!
There are several marketplaces and brokers in the sector through which consumers can book directly. However, easyBoat is the only aggregator where they can find and compare all the listings on a single page.
Its unique proposition in the market offers superior transparency in the ownership of the boat, which is usually hidden on other platforms.
Furthermore, the easy brand offers unrivalled credibility and brand recognition worldwide.
Building on the easy brand legacy, customer experience and support are at the core of the easyBoat platform. A user-friendly interface and a simple-to-follow booking process set the site apart from the competition, which requires lengthy manual inquiries for a single booking.
With an experienced team of entrepreneurs and a strong brand, easyBoat is poised to become the go-to platform for yacht holidays.
- Brand name we trust: easyBoat is a member of easyGroup, the world leader in hospitality and travel. Instant brand recognition provides trust and certainty to holiday bookers worldwide.
- Listing accuracy: We guarantee that all boats on easyBoat are exactly as they appear, provide full ownership transparency and disclose any additional costs.
- Personal assistant: We strive to provide a superior customer experience throughout the booking process through our dedicated customer support team.
- Best Price Guarantee: We guarantee at easyBoat that all boats are offered at the lowest price in the market. If the customer finds the same boat, on the same travel dates, in the same destination for a lower rate elsewhere, we match the price.
The combination of long-term trends in tourism and new consumer behaviours has created a favourable environment for easyBoat to thrive.
- Reduction in competition: Small competitors with a less resilient business model are facing significant cash flow issues. easyBoat is well-positioned to capture market share as others fail.
- Surge in boat rentals: COVID-19 highlighted the benefits of boat holidays for health reasons and has accelerated the growth of the industry. This has introduced a lot more people to this alternative holiday destination.
- Return to tourism: easyBoat will benefit from the return to normality of the tourism industry from 2022 onwards.
- A new generation of travellers: The new social media generation seeks experiences over traditional holidays, with 72% of millennials opting to embark on an experience rather than buying something desirable.
The easyBrand Family
easyBoat will reflect the core values of the ‘easy’ family: to provide great value, simplicity, for the many, not the few and a strive for relentless innovation!
Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou
“easyBoat.com will become a one-stop-shop for all yachties”
As one of the most successful entrepreneurs and businessmen on the island, Sir Stelios began his career working in the shipping industry before founding the easy group of companies.
During the launch press event, Sir Stelios stated:
As a keen yachtsman and fair-weather sailor, myself I have no hesitation in recommending a holiday at sea with the privacy and independence of your very own yacht for the week
Use of Funds
The funds raised through the round will be deployed in three key areas of development in anticipation of the new booking season: marketing and brand awareness, hiring of key personnel, and product development.
In order to establish itself as the dominant authority in the market, easyBoat will use nearly 50% of funds raised for paid advertising campaigns through social media, paid advertising, SEO, influencer partnerships and other traditional streams.
The team will grow to bolster the roles of content management, product development, back-office and support.
The product development team will focus on adding new features like listing your own boat, in-platform advertising, and releasing dedicated mobile apps for iOS and Android.
The platform will initially drive most of its traffic and customer acquisition through paid advertising. The average customer acquisition cost is expected to begin in the range of €300 until the platform develops a reputation in the market, and then slowly coverage towards a long-term target of €100.
The average booking value is estimated to be €3,000, which with a 12% commission rate, will net the company a net average revenue of €360 per booking.
The company is projected to make a loss of €558K during its first fiscal year (2023), which will be covered by the funds raised through the current funding round. However, during the second fiscal year (2024), the platform is projected to attract enough bookings to its overheads and turn a profit of approximately €342K.
easyBoat is still in its very early stages of growth, and it is hard to commit to an exit strategy. Nevertheless, the team can potentially foresee the following exit opportunities:
- Buyout: At the right time, the team is open to a buyout from a strategic acquirer, provided the right price.
- IPO: The Company may look to list in an exchange in the medium to long-term future.
- Dividends: Once the Company reaches a steady state with no additional growth opportunities, it will distribute profits in the form of dividends.
- Bulletin Board: Individual investors can list their interest in selling their stake in the company through Crowdbase’s Bulletin Board (coming soon).
Behind the Pitch podcast
Panayiotis Kakourides talks with the Founders of easyBoat about their journey:
Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou
Founder of easyGroup
- All perks above
- 30 minute conversation with the founders
- 5% discount on your next booking
- All perks above
- One warrant for the purchase of additional 25,000 shares at €1 per share (see documents for more details)