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Mobissimo – Profile

November 30, 2004

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HQ: San Mateo, CA
Founded: 2003
Management: Leadership is not impressively seasoned, but are young, well-educated and go way back – they met at computer camp for teenagers in Siberia. Founders are Béatrice Tarka (CEO) who previously ran Axall Media; Svetlozar Nestorov, (President of Technology) who is currently on leave from his position as an assistant professor of Computer Science at the University of Chicago. Svetlozar holds a B.S in Mathematics and B.S, M.S, and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science from Stanford University. Lucia Carniglia (Travel Consultant) is a Milanese hotelier.
Investors: Company raised seed funding of $1M in April 2004 from Cambrian Ventures\, Index Ventures, and Benhamou Global Ventures.
Business Model: Meta-search engine for travel that crawls Orbitz, Expedia, Travelocity, et al. It does not handle transactions, rather it is building an advertising business and gets a small cut from the transaction engines as an affiliate. Company has been adept at getting the press to describe it as a Google for travel.
Competition: Yahoo in July acquired travel search engine FareChase for an undisclosed sum. Other travel meta search engines are SideStep and Kayak Software.
Dirt: Online travel has been a very sweet sector for startups and we expect Mobissimo to be no exception. We agree with their value proposition that the big players do not provide one-stop researching. Of the travel meta-search engines, Mobissimo’s management team has the most minor pedigree. Expect to see more adult supervision inserted.

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