Today's the big day - the kick-off of our first ever Booking Booster Lab here in Barcelona! Before everyone arrives and we begin the weekend, we introduce you to Xmigrations, an adventure sport online marketplace for the traveller looking to leave the city behind and keep nature conservation in mind throughout his or her adventure. Xmigrations, another Spanish startup, donates a portion of their commission to local NGOs to help foster the sustainability efforts that already exist.
We spoke to Manuel, founder of Xmigrations, about the startup and its impact on the travel industry. Read what he said below:
What triggered you to start Xmigrations?
Xmigrations was born on the island of Menorca when I was working as a lifeguard on the beach. After this experience and my relation with nature and human culture, I felt that humans need more contact with nature.
Besides the adventures, tourism should be a tool of environmental care. As a result, Xmigrations was created for those who want to migrate from cities to seas, mountains, rivers, lakes, etc. and, at the same time, preserve the environment.
What is Xmigrations and what is its impact on the tourism industry?
Xmigrations is the new marketplace in which you can book travel experiences like surfing, scuba diving, hiking, etc. We are the solution for those who want to migrate from the city to nature. Xmigrations works with a single merchant, in this early stage, for each destination and sport, offering to you only the best option and always under our brand Xmigrations. With every reservation, we donate a percentage of our commission to local environmental actions, introducing the environmental NGOs to the classic relation between tourist-enterprise.
There are almost 1.2 million species of animals listed. But, who also lives on Earth? The human being. His compulsive consumption of goods is the main cause of environmental degradation. In the world, the consumer society is only integrated by 28%. If these habits of consumption were extended to the entire world population, the situation would be completely unsustainable, a future foretold death. The classic tourism exports those habits of consumption from urban environments to natural places, but these do not have the necessary infrastructure to support this impact. But there is hope. The human being loves nature, loves culture, beauty, harmony between man and the Earth. There is a tourism that uses nature and needs to preserve it. Through the surf, snow sports, wind sports, scuba diving, multi-adventure or other nature activities, we can meet the needs of tourism experiences and evolve towards a tourism model that supports the conservation of the environment.
What recent milestones are you most proud of?
The most relevant milestone recently achieved has been the metrics in summer. In August, we achieved a total volume of €6600 in sales, achieving a positive ROI in our marketing campaigns by 170%, and so far this year we have managed to group €100 of donations to our NGOs collaborators, which strengthens our goal of donating €90,000 in the next four years.
We also got our first international clients, despite the fact that the current website does not yet have all the products in English. This is a very important milestone because it taps into the potentially huge market of foreign tourists. In 2016, Spain received 76 million tourists, while it only has 45 million inhabitants. This volume demands activities but the other marketplaces do not adapt their service to their needs.
What prompted you to apply for the Booster Lab – Barcelona?
We applied to Booking Booster in Amsterdam last spring, but unfortunately we were not selected. This gave us more energy to be stronger as a team and to grow together. This summer was our first big milestone with ROI 170%. We are now ready to use the time in Booking Booster Lab - Barcelona to work with the group and be able to make the leap in quality that we need.
We are so excited the day has come - that the Booster Lab begins this evening. We've already gotten a chance to meet with some of the participants, mentors, and judges and have made ourselves very much at home in this beautiful venue, Valkiria. Visit again this evening to get some updates from Kick-Off and to get to know these 11 inspiring startups even better.