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Exclusive: Standard hotel group turns tech incubator as One Night app raises $5M

Exclusive: Standard hotel group turns tech incubator as One Night app raises $5M
[Photo: JessyeAnne/Wikimedia Commons]

Standard International, the hotel group behind The Standard Hotels, is known for comfortable beds, cheeky marketing, and always providing a bustling spot to get a late-night drink or an early-morning breakfast. Now it’s adding something new to its resume: tech incubator.

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One Night, the app that makes it easy for both the spontaneous and the procrastinating to make last-minute bookings at independent hotels, today secured $5 million in Series A funding, led by consumer venture capital firm SWaN and Legend.

One Night’s development was led by Standard International’s CEO, Amar Lalvani, and Jimmy Suh, its chief commercial officer, and launched in late 2016. The mobile app features a curated list of over 200 independent hotels that are open for last-minute stays. Since it launched, One Night has grown to 17 markets, including London and Bangkok.

Standard International is thrilled about its secret life as a tech incubator. “One Night [is] the first successfully venture-funded tech business launched by a hotel company,” says Lalvani. “Its traction with both hotel partners and guests derives from our ability to create a product designed for the next-generation traveler who desires the elusive combination of experience curation and immediacy.”

With SWaN and Legend’s investment, One Night will spin off from Standard International with Suh leading One Night’s operations. “With SWaN’s investment, we are in a great position to accelerate the growth of the One Night app and help both our hotel partners and the travelers, alike, realize greater benefits. With the funding, we also will be launching a new distribution channel later this year that is poised to disrupt traditional online travel agencies and set the stage for the next generation of travel agents,” says Suh.

For SWaN, the investment was a natural fit. “We are excited by the progress the team has made in creating a differentiated experience and look forward to supporting Jimmy and his team as they build a disruptive new travel platform,” says David Strasser, managing director of SWaN.

This isn’t the first innovation from the group, which also launched The Lobby, an in-house social network, as well as early partnerships with Warby Parker, Peloton, and most recently Lord Jones, which will help them launch the first cannabis dispensary in a hotel.

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