November 12, 2008
UpTake Becomes Largest Travel Search Engine With the Most Sources, Products and Opinions
In just six months since its public beta launch in May of this year, UpTake's travel search and discovery engine has grown exponentially. The travel industry's deepest and broadest database of hotels and attractions has surpassed all other online travel search engines in terms of indexed sources, products, and opinions. With this announcement, significant new industry partnerships and $10 million in new funding secured, UpTake is thriving and growing in an economy in which many start-ups are struggling.
Since its public beta in May 2008, UpTake's search engine has increased its total number of indexed sources from 1,000 to 5,000 making its database of individual travel sites nearly 10 times greater than any other travel search engine. The sources indexed by UpTake include trusted sites like Expedia, Fodor's, goCityKids, TripAdvisor, Virtual Tourist and Yahoo! Travel.
UpTake's rich database now delivers summary information about more than 775,000 U.S. products including 600,000 U.S. attractions and more than 175,000 U.S. accommodations, including B&Bs, resorts and campgrounds. UpTake's search recommendations are based on the aggregation of more than 20 million opinions from across 5,000 web sites, an unmatched breadth of understanding.
Founded by Yen Lee, former general manager of Yahoo! Travel, UpTake was developed to be complementary to existing travel sites by providing relevant summaries to travelers and offering direct links to travel sites for complete results. In this way, UpTake is complementary to its partners -- their products get discovered, while travelers can find vacation information more easily. Using UpTake, travelers are able to make better decisions because it delivers personalized results relevant to their desired trip.
"The great thing about the Internet is that users have access to huge volumes of information; that's also a frustrating problem in categories like travel, with scores of sites to visit," said Greg Sterling, founder of Sterling Market Intelligence. "Bringing together more comprehensive data in a single location greatly simplifies an overly complex and time consuming travel planning process for consumers."
Since its inception, UpTake forged strategic partnerships with some of the most respected names in the travel industry, including Fodor's, BedandBreakfast.com, Restaurantica.com, OpenTable, La Quinta Inn & Suites and FriendCommunications, as well as recent relationships with Yelp and EpicTrip. By working with UpTake, partners can maximize the exposure of their products by providing the most up-to-date content for search engine visitors. Companies wishing to participate can contact UpTake by emailing [email protected]
In September, amidst a global economic crisis, UpTake announced it had raised more than $10 million in new funding, including a Series B round of investment led by Trinity Ventures and Shasta Ventures, and additional backing from other sources. The new funding built on the company's Series A round of $4 million from Shasta Ventures announced in December 2007.
UpTake will be participating in the Travel Innovation Summit at the PhoCusWright Conference on Monday, November 17 in Hollywood, Calif. UpTake was selected by PhoCusWright's experienced analyst team to showcase its innovative travel search engine. Yen Lee will present an overview and demonstration of UpTake, illustrating the impact its service will have on the future of travel planning.
Founded in 2006, UpTake has indexed more than 5,000 sources and 20 million travelers' opinions from across the web to help travelers make better decisions about where to go, where to stay and what to do. UpTake uses a travel ontology and natural language analysis to extract meta-tags from the collective intelligence of the Web and returns unbiased, personalized recommendations based on travelers' facts and feelings about hotels, motels, camping, beaches, spas, golf courses, attractions and restaurants. The company is headquartered in Palo Alto. More information can be found at www.uptake.com.
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Media Contact: Veronica Skelton Concept Communications for UpTake.com 415.342.3435 Email Contact
SOURCE: UpTake Networks