Valpas raises 1.6m€ to empower hotels to make every trip bed bug safe
Thu, 21 Apr 2022 16:14:17 GMT
Valpas has raised a 1.6m€ seed funding round from ActivumSG Ventures, TESI, Realty Corporation, and existing investors Maki.vc, Icebreaker.vc and Reaktor.
Headquartered in Finland, Valpas was founded after every traveler's worst nightmare: cofounder Martim Gois caught bed bugs while traveling. He recognized how pest control and the extensive use of pesticides were temporary solutions that would continue to fail people, hospitality providers, and the planet.
Valpas is the new design standard for hotels that frees guests in-room from the bed bugs they may carry, so guests return home safely and the hotel never gets infested.
Since launching the initial version of the product, Valpas has signed over 150 premium hotels belonging to brands like Pestana Hotels and Resorts, ARP Hansen Hotel Group, Autograph Collections, and Design Hotels in over 20 cities such as Paris, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Zurich, Munich, Lisbon, and Madrid. As a result, Valpas has protected over 1 million trips and over 1 billion in revenues while increasing customer satisfaction levels by up to 35%. Moreover, many forward-thinking guest-focused brands like Bob W and Honotel are rolling the standard out across all their hotels.
The new funding enables Valpas to extend its bed bug safety standard across more hotels and travel agents and expand into new geographies such as The Far East and the US. As a result, there's more protection for travelers, higher guest satisfaction for hotels, and fewer pesticides for the planet.
Bed bugs are global and can infect any traveler, with 30-40% of households saying they have suffered from bed bugs at least once. Recently, bed bugs have even been found to transmit the parasite that causes Chagas disease.
"No one wants to carry bed bugs home after travels and spend thousands of euros disinfecting it. Valpas empowers hotels, travel agents, and booking platforms to extend a guarantee of a bed bug-safe stay to their customers. What vaccines, masks, and physical distancing are to covid, Valpas is to bed bugs", says Martim Gois, cofounder-CEO at Valpas.
According to the most recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), greenhouse gas emissions must peak by 2025, and radical emission cuts are needed. Valpas enables hotels to stop the continued use of fossil fuel-made pesticides and their greenhouse gas emissions lasting over 100 years. Hence, hotels can now be part of the climate crisis solution, contributing to reducing pesticides in households, too, as bugs no longer spread.
"Pest control has relied on extermination and pesticides for too long. With its IoT-based product, Valpas is building the next generation of safety and hygiene tools that prevent the problem from taking hold in the first place – and in so doing, reduce the need for room closures and the risk of negative brand exposure. We are excited to back Martim and the team in building this new standard in hospitality hygiene", says Natalie Somekh, Partner at ActivumSG Ventures.
ABOUT THE VALPAS BED BUG SAFETY STANDARD
Hotels can retrofit the Valpas standard in any room in minutes by switching existing bed legs to Valpas-designed legs and connecting them to a smartphone. The technology can be integrated into legless bed structures, too. The IoT-enabled (Internet of Things) bed legs have a patented design that collects bed bugs within hours of their arrival when still few. The legs notify the staff, who can empty the device in seconds. There's no need to take any rooms out of action, appoint a pest control company, use pesticides, or incur any damage to the hotel brand.
Likewise, travelers don't need to check beds upon arrival or stress bringing bugs home or whether a bite was a bed bug or not. As a result, hotels can protect every room and guest, who can recognize safe hotels from the Valpas label on hotel websites and travel platforms.
Valpas exists to enable every traveler to enjoy the living world with confidence.
Martim Gois, CEO