Like an Airbnb but for events spaces, Eventup is announcing a $1.8 million seed round today, with financing led by Eric Lefkofsky’s Lightbank and followed on by NEA, Crosscut Ventures, New World Ventures and others including LA-based incubator Science.
While startups like Venuetastic have the bars part of the event venue equation down, EventUp has much wider eyes, eventually wanting to control the entire “events funnel.” The company monetizes by taking a 10% cut of each transaction.
“There is no one really doing what we do,” CEO Tony Adam tells me, “We’ve created a comprehensive marketplace of locations for people to book event space. From traditional locations like banquet halls to non traditional locations like art galleries and warehouses and unique locations like lofts, homes, or large estates. ”
The startup now offers over 3,000 venues on its platform, covering LA, SF, NY, and most recently Chicago. Adam tells me that the company has a plan to expand nationwide, and will use the funding in order to build a sales team that can tap into the $260+ billion dollar corporate market.
Venues are just the “tip of the spear” for Adam, and he hopes to add additional “Events” services such as DJs, Florists, and Photography to EventUp by the end of the year.
“We’ve taken a very broken and fragmented process that involves weeks of research by searching for locations for events across many different websites and slimmed it down into a discovery process that only takes a couple of minutes,” he says, “We’ve seen a major influx in inquiries both for social events, but it’s even more interesting that Corporate Events have led to larger booking volume than expected.”
You know, I’m really seeing dollar signs here (and I guess so did LightBank, etc). Interview with Adam below.