Shep was founded (as Complai) in late 2016 by a founding team with a combined 11 years of experience in the travel technology space. In addition to the core team, advisors and investors include representatives from Fintech (Sofi, Visa), Travel (Expedia, Sabre, HomeAway, Kayak, American Airlines, Concur) and HR channel partnerships (Insperity).
After three years of working for a travel tech startup targeting large corporate travel agencies in the US and India, CEO, Daniel Senyard, realized that while small-to-medium-sized enterprises (SME) don’t have a good way to manage their travel policy and expenses, they are hesitant to pay and feel that most travel management tools are excessive for small teams. To match millennial and SME behavior, Shep was founded to focus on frictionless, light-touch platform freedom (allowing you to book on your favorite sites) vs. a heavy-handed, better mousetrap/simplified Concur.
We believe that light touch travel guidance, paired with ubiquitous, timely information and communication, empowers employees to book the travel that best suits the needs of the business as it grows.
For all press inquiries, please contact Crystal@ShepTravel.com.
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Complai Raises $1.4M Seed Round to Save Growing Companies on Their Second Largest Expense, Travel
Flagship Product, Shep, Helps Businesses Know Just How Much Is Spent by Business Travelers on Their Favorite Travel Sites
AUSTIN, TEXAS, FEB. 13, 2018 – Complai, the Austin-based makers of Shep, today announced the company has closed a $1.4 million seed funding round led by Moonshots Capital with participation from the Capital Factory, an Austin-based accelerator and fund. The financing will be used to bring the company’s flagship product to market, support customer onboarding, and grow the team and product. Craig Cummings, Co-Founder and General Partner at Moonshots Capital will join CEO, Daniel Senyard, on Complai’s board of directors.
Founded in 2016, Complai’s employee-centric travel tool, Shep, embraces the rogue spirit of modern business travelers by letting them book business travel on consumer sites while tracking their spending through a browser extension. Automated tracking helps small-to-medium enterprises save valuable resources on their second largest controllable expense, business travel.
“More than 70% of U.S. companies’ travel is ‘unmanaged,’ meaning employees are booking business travel on consumer sites without the supervision of corporate travel agents. There is a huge need for better tools to guide booking behavior and capture spending on consumer-focused sites like Expedia, Southwest, and Airbnb,” said Daniel Senyard,”CEO of Complai and one of Business Travel News’ “2017 Innovators You Should Know.” “Moonshots Capital team’s network and experience in taking companies from startup, through growth, and even possibly on to acquisition, is exactly what we need to take our company to the next step. Craig’s background in travel and transportation, and his experience with RideScout, are invaluable. We’re honored to have him on our board and behind our company.”
Using a simple Chrome Extension, Shep delivers detailed policy information and reimbursement guidance at a glance. After a search, Shep outlines results that are compliant in green, helping travelers see which options are within the travel policy on sites like Expedia, AirBnB, Orbitz, and SouthWest. The extension then triggers a communication workflow, alerting managers to policy violations through email and Slack while allowing travelers to justify overspending. This eliminates uncertainty on both sides; the traveler knows instantly know what is expected of them and allowed, and the finance team is no longer in the dark about how much was spent.
“Daniel and Complai have built a compelling product that businesses and employees want, need, and love. Shep is an innovative new business travel booking platform that allows employees to book travel on the sites they prefer while complying with company guidelines. We are proud to lead their seed round and look forward to helping their company grow,” said Craig Cummings, Moonshots Capital.
Notable angel investors in this round include former CEO of Sabre, Kathy Misunas; former President of Travelocity Business, Ellen Keszler; Co-founder of fintech unicorn, SoFi, Jim Finnigan; ex-CMO of HomeAway and Visa Europe, Mariano Dima.
Shep is expected to launch in mid-2018. For information, please visit www.sheptravel.com to request early access.
Complai’s first product, Shep solves SME travel by helping businesses easily set up a travel policy, guide traveler bookings and track real-time spending on consumer sites through a simple browser extension and advanced reporting capabilities. For more information visit www.sheptravel.com.
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About Capital Factory
Capital Factory is the center of gravity for entrepreneurs in Texas, the best state for startups. Last year more than 100,000 entrepreneurs, programmers, and designers gathered day and night, in-person and online for meetups, classes, and coworking. We meet the best entrepreneurs in Austin and introduce them to their first investors, employees, mentors, and customers. According to Pitchbook, Capital Factory has been the most active investor in Texas since 2013.
For more information, please visit www.CapitalFactory.com.