- Techshop Primo fund, specializing in Seed B2B investments, announced its second closing at 37 million euros and invested in Smartpricing, its third deal three months after inception.
- The startup has launched a dynamic pricing software, which helps Hotels and B&Bs optimize their pricing through its proprietary AI-powered algorithm. Leveraging on its growth in the Italian market, the company also plans an international expansion.
- Fabrick, Doorway, Digitech Fund and Electa completed the round.
Milan, 11 July 2022 – Three months after their first closing, The Techshop SGR announced a further capital raise of Techshop Primo, a closed-end venture capital fund reserved to qualified investors. The total fund endowment now has reached 37 million euros, allowing the firm’s management to stay on course to positioning The Techshop as a key player for B2B digital innovations in the Italian seed landscape.
On this second closing, Fondazione Sardegna, a discerning VC fund investor, joined Techshop Primo, alongside renowned individuals.
The Techshop team has also finalized the investment in Smartpricing, a SaaS solution dedicated to dynamically optimizing rates for small and medium hospitality facilities. The transaction resonates with the fund’s strategy to focus on Italy’s technology and entrepreneurial excellence, aiming at international expansion. The company, located in Trentino, an alpine region in Northern East Italy, is growing fast in the domestic market and has recently entered the German-speaking markets with encouraging initial results.
The Techshop led Smartpricing’s Seed round, including a diversified pool of primary domestic investors: Fabrick, Doorway, Gellify / Digitech Fund and Electa Ventures.
Smartpricing was founded in 2020 in Riva del Garda (TN) by an entrepreneurial trio composed by Luca Rodella, a marketer with previous stints in the PropTech & Hospitality sector, the CTO Eugenio Bancaro, an IT engineer with professional experience in Silicon Valley, and the COO Tommaso Centonze, a Google Ireland alumnus and former strategy consultant.
Smartpricing offers a software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution that can be easily integrated with the most popular hotel software packages, the so-called Property Management Systems and Channel Managers, and allows the dynamic optimization of the accommodation rates with a room-by-room granularity. Machine learning algorithms lie at the core of Smartpricing solution, which is able to process different types of data, including market, occupancy and price trends in the specific geographical area and the hotel historical data. The goal is to ensure maximum occupancy of the structure at a revenue-optimizing price, based on the characteristics of the hotel and the reference market.
Smartpricing targets are small and medium-sized hotels and B & Bs up to 100 rooms, accounting for 96% of the domestic hotel rooms supply. Software solutions for the hospitality business are a rapidly expanding category: reaching a total value of € 3.6 billion in 2027, driven by the need for digitization along the whole value chain.
Smartpricing’s strong revenue increase witnesses the solution’s appeal to the hotel business, specifically for solutions helping the hotel manager optimize room pricing with an easy-to-use, affordable digital solution. In the first half of 2022, Smartpricing doubled its customer base, getting in sight of the 1,000 clients’ threshold.
For the Smartpricing transaction, The Techshop was assisted by Laward, the law firm led by Pierantonio Luceri. Studio Pomara Scibetta & Partners supported the Fund for the Financial and Tax Due Diligence.
“Our journey is proceeding according to plan both in terms of fundraising velocity and the asset quality. We are particularly delighted that Fondazione Sardegna decided to invest in our Fund, joining premier investors such as Cassa Depositi e Prestiti Venture Capital and the selected group of individual investors who have chosen to invest in our project,” said Gianluca D’Agostino and Aurelio Mezzotero, Managing Partners of The Techshop. “The Smartpricing deal looks like a manifesto for our Fund: a fast-growing startup, with an innovative SaaS product impacting the real economy, in a still old-fashioned industry, such as Tourism and Travel, where our country has a clear competitive advantage. One indicator is particularly key: Smartpricing’s clients will soon process an aggregate transaction flow of 1 billion euros.”
Luca Rodella, CEO and co-Founder of Smartpricing, said: “We are proud The Techshop believed in our team and our vision. The goal is now to accelerate our expansion, to bring practical and easy-to-adopt innovation to the entire hospitality world, nevertheless incorporating sophisticated and constantly evolving technology. Our customer base in Italy is growing fast, and the first indications from our foreign operations are exciting: the goal is to manage 200 facilities in Switzerland, Germany and Austria by the end of the year. “