Travel Giant Lonely Planet Buys Spanish Start-Up TouristEye

Travel Giant Lonely Planet Buys Spanish Start-Up TouristEye

Travel Giant Lonely Planet Buys Spanish Start-Up TouristEye

Spanish tourism and travel start-ups have been grabbing the attention of top global industry players recently, putting their expertise on the map. Last month, Lonely Planet snapped up trip planner TouristEye. The Spanish firm’s skills in mobile and online community building was the main attraction for the Australian print and online guide giant.

Launched in 2010 at the height of the travel planning start-up boom, TouristEye was one of the many businesses allowing consumers to create their own trips through content shared within the community. This concept of “crowdsourcing” is a good fit with Lonely Planet’s commitment to providing independent and trustworthy information for travellers and helping them solve their problems.

The TouristEye Android and iOS mobile apps enable users to gather activities and destinations to create their own wish list. Then advertisers bombard them with a slew of special deals. TouristEye claims over 500,000 people have used both its desktop and mobile apps.


The tourism and travel industry continues to be big business despite the economic crisis. The revival in Spain’s tourism sector has inspired entrepreneurs to develop apps for travel and hotel bookings. This business’ growth potential has fuelled M&A amongst local firms and has also attracted interest from foreign players, keen to boost their services and improve competitiveness.

After being bought up itself in March by US-based media group NC2 Media, Lonely Planet is aggressively pursuing its ambition to become a multi-platform travel content and commerce business. The tie-up with TouristEye is an important strategic step towards achieving this goal.

Lonely Planet has one of the best travel content databases in the world, and TouristEye has the technological know-how to develop new web and mobile products – a partnership made in travel heaven. But aware of how crucial branding and having the right group of professionals can be to guarantee the success of any acquisition, Lonely Planet will retain the Spanish start-up’s team and the TouristEye brand.


Travel search site Skyscanner has also turned to Spain for its latest expansion move. In September, it bought Fogg, a Barcelona-based company focused on making Internet hotel searches simpler and faster.

With this latest acquisition, Skyscanner continues to build up its travel offerings. It will integrate Fogg’s hotel search into its own site. The move will be completed by end-2013 and will enhance the hotel coverage on Skyscanner’s website.

The world’s fastest-growing international travel search firm will also open a new office in Barcelona, where five Fogg staff are currently based.

For information on Spanish travel start-ups, contact corporate law firm Argali Abogados.

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