Postcards from Europe: Case Study, Fastest Growing Top Ten!
Welcome to the content from our series "Postcards from Europe" that ran between the 14th - 19th of July 2014. On this page we showcase the top ten fastest growing start-ups in Europe. The data was collected from Deloitte Technology Fast 50 for Central Europe. Find out about our "Postcards" series HERE
#1: Vola.ro: Located in Romania it just goes to show that after the downfall of communism a real spirit of entrepreneurship has taken hold especially as Romanians are amongst the most travelled of all Europeans (not something you would have seen as far back as the seventies and eighties!). Vola.ro is essentially a travel and holiday booking site that targets both the corporate and general consumer market. Founded back in 2006 by two young polish men and a Romanian they have experienced rapid growth. According to the Deloitte index they grew an incredible 5729% even though Europe was in the midst of large scale economic turmoil.
They launched the business on April 18th 2007 and had their first client that very same day – which tells us they did an incredible amount of market research before they kicked off. By 2009 they had 4 Million Euro in turnover and sold more than 17,000 flights. Along the way they also saw value in patenting their intellectual property and that same year they launched a unique product into the market called “Price Alert” – something that a number of airlines appear to be copying with daily deal announcements. By 2011 they had annual turnover of more than 15 million Euro and had started the launch phase into other countries such as Ukraine in 2012. Today they have more than 600,000 ticket searches daily, have a social media audience of more than 53,000 fans and the sky is quite literally the limit.
Lessons for start-ups: there are still significant opportunities in traditional industries such as tourism, travel and hospitality. As the European economy begins to recover over the next five years there will be higher disposable incomes – that said, people are still looking for deals. During the great depression of the 1920’s people learnt how to live off little – they have done so again during this last five years so be mindful about the market demand matched with the right pricing. Maybe that’s why a brokerage like Vola still has so much potential!
Check out the infographic and click on the link below to find out more!