RealTime IT News

Investors Pump Another $31 Million Into lastminute.com

Seven new international strategic partners are putting an additional $31 million into lastminute.com, the late-purchase e-commerce company announced this week.

The seven partners are BAA plc, Priceline.com, Bass Hotels & Resorts, Sony Music Entertainment, Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Viventures and Mitsubishi Corp. Finance.

"This is another important step in realizing our strategy to become the global last minute marketplace," said the joint founders of lastminute.com, Brent Hoberman and Martha Lane Fox, in a statement.

Hoberman and Fox said they expected to create many exciting new offerings for customers in target markets as a result of the deal.

lastminute.com continues its rapid expansion, having recently appointed Heads of Northern and Southern Europe to oversee the start-up of country-specific businesses. The extra funding will be vital for these new enterprises, says the firm

Speaking for priceline.com, Chief Executive Officer Rick Braddock said he viewed lastminute.com's business model as complementary to that of priceline. He said the two companies would work closely together both domestically and internationally.

The new backers of lastminute.com will be joining several others, including France Telecom's venture fund Innovacom, Deutsche Telekom's venture fund T-Ventures and Intel.

Launched in October 1998, lastminute.com was originally funded by Arts Alliance and Global Retail Partners.