for private accommodations is launching with a goal of giving “hosts and guests
more control, ownership and lower fees than existing platforms.”
Dtravel is backed by a $5 million
seed funding round from Kenetic Capital, Future Perfect Ventures, DHVC, Plutus
VC, GBV Capital, AU21 Capital, Shima Capital, LD Capital and NGC Ventures, as
well as several angel investors.
The venture is being launched by
Travala, an Australia-based online travel agency built on blockchain that
accepts more than two dozen cryptocurrencies as payment. The launch
announcement says “former executives from Airbnb, Expedia and other global technology
companies” are also part of the launch, but it does not provide names.
Subscribe to our newsletter below
The announcement also does not
name any executives for Dtravel, with a spokesperson explaining that because it
is a “decentralized autonomous organization (DAO)” there are not traditional
leadership roles. Instead Dtravel is governed and owned by its community of
hosts and guests who hold its native TRVL token and will vote on decisions that
guide the network.
Dtravel says all revenue from bookings
will be funneled into its Community Treasury and Protection Fund, which exists
for the benefit of hosts and guests.
“Traditional home sharing
platforms are aligned with their users in the early stages, but over time this
changes. With the need to return profits to shareholders, home-sharing
platforms are forced to extract as much as possible from transactions on their
platforms,” says Juan Otero, co-founder and CEO of Travala.
“Dtravel meets the needs
of the home-sharing community first and forever. It’s easy-to-use, highly
secure, and optimized for the next generation of hosts and guests looking to
take back control of their travel experience.”
Bookings fees on Dtravel
are 7.5%, and the site accepts payment in Bitcoin, its TRVL token and other
cryptocurrencies as well as fiat currency.
“Sharing economies are
authentic and sustainable only when they are governed and controlled by
stakeholders, and the home-sharing ecosystem has been broken for years under
outsized control from centralized corporations. It’s time for a community-owned
and community-governed replacement,” says Jalak Jobanputra, founding partner
of Future/Perfect Ventures.
To incentivize hosts to
join, Dtravel says the first 100,000 to register on the site will be eligible
to receive more than $35 million worth of TRVL tokens.