- UAE-based travel management platform Dharma, has raised a $4.7 million pre-Series A funding round led by San Francisco-based Convivialite Ventures, with participation from marketplace-focused FJ Labs, Equinox, Shorooq Partners and some angel investors including Soul Cycle fitness clubs owner, Stephen Ross.
- Founded in 2018 by Nisma Benani, Charaf El Mansouri, and Leah Howe, Dharma allows travellers to book travel experiences hosted by their favourite chef, surfer, or fitness instructor.
- The funds will allow Dharma to expand its offering of multi-day travel experiences in new verticals such as culinary, sports, fashion and lifestyle tourism.
- Last year, Dharma raised $3.5 million led by Convivialite Ventures with additional backing from Abu Dhabi's Hub71, bringing its total funding raised to date to $10 million.
Source: The National
Dharma, an Abu Dhabi-based business-to-business travel management platform, has raised $4.7 million in a new funding round as it aims to expand its business.
The pre-series A funding round was led by San Francisco-based Convivialite Ventures, with participation from marketplace-focused FJ Labs, Equinox and Soul Cycle fitness clubs owner Stephen Ross, the startup said on Wednesday.
Other investors and angels include Mubadala-backed Shorooq Partners, Matt Higgins from Shark Tank, football icon Eric Cantona, consumer fund Goodwater and Skift founder Rafat Ali.
The latest round brings Dharma's total equity funding to $10 million, the company said.
Following its recent partnership with Paramount Global to launch “Paris by Emily,” the first official travel experience for the hit Netflix series, Emily in Paris, the funds will allow Dharma to expand its offering of multi-day travel experiences in “new verticals such as culinary, sports, fashion and lifestyle tourism”.
“Our core conviction is that the future of travel is passion-based,” said Charaf El Mansouri, chief executive and co-founder at Dharma.
“If for the past 50 years, people have travelled for the where, the next 50 years, people will travel for the why. That’s the future Dharma is enabling.”
The idea that you could seamlessly book your next trip “hosted by your favourite chef, surfer, or fitness instructor is both universal and extremely personal”, he added.
Launched in 2018 by Nisma Benani, Brice Carpentier, Mr El Mansouri and Leah Howe, Dharma was one of the first start-ups accepted into the Hub71 programme, Abu Dhabi's global technology ecosystem. Its founding team relocated to Abu Dhabi from New York and Marrakesh.
Startups in the UAE continue to attract the attention of global investors as the Emirates continues to develop its digital economy.