Home Tourism Bulgarian SaaS startup URBO Studio is ready for global expansion

Bulgarian SaaS startup URBO Studio is ready for global expansion

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You only have a minute? Here are 3 key takeaways from the article:

• Capital Investments VC invested €1.2 million in Bulgarian B2B SaaS company UPASS, whose main product URBO Studio aims to digitize service businesses.

• URBO Studio serves clients in the tourism, attractions, sports, leisure and event management sectors, with a focus on markets such as Bulgaria and the CEE region.

• Key features include booking modules, channel management, online concierge, online payments, e-ticketing, ticketing solutions, access control and various marketing tools for business growth .

According to the Bulgarian company, the latest investment is seen as a turning point as it will help it access new markets in CEE and the Middle East.

For Capital Investments VC, part of the Bulgarian Development Bank, investing in the company was a no-brainer due to many factors.

“It depended on the potential and the product they had, and the team worked together on this for a long time. They have been building the company from scratch since 2016 and with the core product we see growth potential as it seeks to completely digitalize the service businesses which are still very analogue in Bulgaria and Eastern Europe. There is good competition in Western Europe and the United States, but not so much in Eastern Europe. The market is quite difficult for external players, and the team believes they can break into it, starting with expanding in Bulgaria and then abroad,” says Kristiyan Begazhev, investment partner at Capital Investments.

The investment in URBO Studio is the fund’s eighth. Their portfolio consists of technology companies and traditional “brick and mortar” companies.

“Our goal is to invest in Bulgarian companies with great growth prospects. We view growth abroad very favorably and, together with URBO Studio, we have recognized this potential,” added Begazhev.

Transforming the experience economy through digital innovation

URBO Studio specializes in providing reservation and management software, tailor-made for experience economy businesses and verticals such as events, attractions, activities, spas and sports venues .

They are already present in the Bulgarian market and are now looking to expand into Central and Eastern Europe as well as the Middle East, the company’s co-founder and COO Ekaterina Borisova told The Recursive.

“In an industry known for its lack of digital presence and complex challenges, we focused on a key problem: the high costs of attracting new customers and the difficulty in retaining them. Currently, many companies rely primarily on third-party marketplaces, which limits their access to valuable customer data and makes it difficult to secure repeat sales,” Borisova points out.

And that’s where URBO Studio comes in, enabling businesses to get the most out of their solutions.

“Through our platform, businesses can also expand into new distribution channels while keeping their current customers engaged and looking for more,” she told The Recursive.

B2G impact and partnerships

The impact of URBO Studio’s solutions is illustrated through real-world applications, such as Stara Zagora Zoo, which leveraged URBO Studio to increase sales.

“They started with our online reservation system and quickly understood how our kiosk solutions could increase their box office sales. This decision not only increased their sales and improved their customer experience, but also allowed them to save a lot on personnel costs, especially during the busy season,” Borisova told The Recursive.

Additionally, the company and the impact of its products extend beyond the private sector, as it actively collaborates with government entities through Business-to-Government (B2G) partnerships. Present in more than 20 municipalities in Bulgaria, URBO Studio offers solutions aimed at improving public services, especially in the tourism sector.

“Burgas is a striking example, a city that is truly taking the lead in innovation to make tourism even better. They organize concerts, festivals, create cool new attractions and offer boat tours to make the visitor experience top-notch. And to make it all go smoothly, they turned to technology from URBO Studio, which helps them manage everything – from city attractions to sightseeing, both online and offline,” concludes Borisova.

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