July 30, 2013
Today, Social Tables announced $1.6 million in funding led by Militello Capital.
The DC startup helps hotels and other organizations plan events: from building customized seating charts to tracking attendees to collaborating with colleagues. Launched just recently, Social Tables's 3D rendering feature lets event planners show their potential clients what a space will look like in three-dimensional glory.
After raising $500,000 in funding last May, Social Tables has grown to a team of 16. They’ve landed customers like Sheraton, Hilton, Renaissance, and Crowne Plaza franchises, and they’re used by teams at Forbes, Chick Fil-A, Columbia University, and the US State Department. Things are looking up.
“We’d be fine without more capital,” says marketing manager Trevor Lynn. But he insists that the hotel industry is at a crossroads, where established software vendors haven’t brought hotels into the cloud and no startup has stepped in to take over. He thinks Social Tables could be that startup, but only if they act quickly. “Getting your foot in the door in a hotel is probably the hardest part,” says Lynn.
Social Tables found this path after launching an initial version that helped brides build seating charts. They spent a few months juggling a product for brides and a product for corporate event planners, but the latter won out.
“B2C was a nice testing ground for us where we got to really hone the product, get a lot of people to use it, get a nice ground-level buzz,” says Lynn.
The funding round also included existing investors 500 Startups and Fortify Ventures, as well as Goldin Ventures, Middeland Capital, K Street Capital, former White House Social Secretary Philip Dufour, and angel investor Sameer Gulati of Zynga and Workday.
Social Tables will use the extra infusion of cash to hire more employees, expand their marketing reach, and develop some new event-planning products to be released in the fall.
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