Ayenda reaches 500 hotels in Latin America

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Ayenda reaches 500 hotels in Latin America
Source: Katherine Valencia Gamboa
April 25, 2022

The Colombian firm is present in more than 40 cities in Colombia, Peru and Mexico 

After having successfully faced the crisis in the hotel sector and positioned itself as a solution for those who travel for work, Ayenda announced that it had reached 500 hotels, a milestone that consolidates the company founded in 2018 as the largest hotel chain in Latin America. by number of properties.

During 2021, the Colombian startup managed to add more than 300 hotels in the region; At the same time, it became the chain with the largest number of properties in Peru, with more than 90 hotels, and strengthened its presence in Mexico with more than 15. In addition, with nearly 200,000 users on its platform, it had an increase of 142.9%. compared to 2020.

“In addition to considerably increasing our hotel base, we managed to enter the Mexican market by opening operations in Mexico City and Guadalajara, while expanding to new cities in Colombia and Peru. Today we have a presence in more than 40 cities between these three countries, with more than 10,000 rooms”, explained Andrés Sarrazola, CEO and co-founder of Ayenda.

The figures show the great opportunity for the independent hotel sector, since Ayenda works through a franchise system that increases the number of reservations by up to 30% of its partner hotels, without raising operating costs.

But, what have been the keys to achieving this growth, despite the crisis caused by the pandemic? For Sarrazola, 2021 was key because the firm was able to recover 100% and managed to grow three times its size since before the pandemic, but also because "we learned to have clearer processes to add hotels and to fill them with knowledge of the guest deeper than before, it was also the year in which our app positioned itself as the most important direct channel for Ayenda”.

And it is that as the tourism sector began to reactivate in the region, travelers who must travel for work - mainly - found in Ayenda the lodging alternative with a good cost - benefit and friendly options to book easily and quickly.

Precisely, the use of last-minute travel apps in order to save money is one of the relevant trends for the tourism sector that the startup identified the previous year. In fact, Ayenda jumped from 22nd to 5th place in the Android app store, surpassing the likes of Airbnb. “Travellers know that when you make a last minute trip the prices are more expensive on other platforms, but in Ayenda from the moment you enter you already have a discount that increases the more reservations you make in the app and that is what has boosted this growth”, adds Sarrazola.

On the other hand, the success of Ayenda also has to do with human talent and its ability to adapt to the ups and downs of the market, as in the case of many Latin American startups. “We have managed to build a high-performance team with great commercial, technological and analytical skills that have allowed us to grow exponentially. This is accompanied by established processes that intercommunicate with each other to make the different stages that Colombia, Peru and Mexico go through more efficient," explains the company's CEO, adding that "we must remember that the pandemic made many independent hotels They will have a bad time, so partnering with Ayenda is a great alternative.”  

The team behind the startup has also been essential for this expansion process in Latin America, which in September of last year received a significant boost with an investment of USD 10 million by the US fund 500 Global, Dalus Capital and IDB Lab.

By 2022, Ayenda's objectives include doubling the number of associated hotels hand in hand with technological development that allows for this scaling: "This year is key for us because we want to pass the barrier of a thousand hotels, it is something unprecedented for a hotel chain in the region and it will require a lot of innovation to properly manage that volume of hotels and rooms,” adds Sarrazola.

While the reactivation of the hotel sector advances in the countries where the startup operates, Ayenda is aware of the importance of travel as a source of employment and economic development, especially in developing economies such as those of Latin America.


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