Several months ago, we reported on German startup Zizoo, a marketplace for chartering a boat while you are holiday. Now, we wanted to take a look at Spanish rival Nautal, which has found success as a global platform for those who may be looking to sail the seas.
I wanted to get a feel for Nautal, so I did a search for “New South Wales” (Australia) next week and received a couple dozen listings, which can be filtered down by the type of craft (sailing boat, motorboat, catamaran, yacht, or simply “boat”), the length, number of passengers, and whether or not you will require a skipper to guide it. And then the profile for a typical boat reveals its home-port, amenities, size, photos, and availability.
Curiously, they do not seem to provide the ability to order listings by price, which can range widely depending on the boat, with the low end for this market being around $270 (that’s Australian dollars) for a half day and jumping to more than $9,000 (again for a half day) for those looking for a yacht. Each listing includes a couple of prices, with each including a fee to take it out for half of a day and some including a daily fee, while others list a weekly fee. And these fees are not necessarily fixed, as clicking on the profile for a particular boat reveals that prices vary, based on when you rent it. Like many marketplaces, Nautal’s business model includes taking a small percentage as commission on each transaction that they process.
Nautal CEO and co-founder Octavi Uya tells me that they launched in June 2013 and have processed more than 1,000 rentals this year, with over 300,000 visitors coming to their website. The business launched with 20,000 Euro in funding from the founders, but they followed that up with a round worth 95,000 Euro in December 2013 and then a round earlier this year, valued at 265,000 Euro, from undisclosed angels.
What is interesting is that, after launching initially in Spain and then in Germany and France in 2014, they expanded to Australia, the Caribbean, and other Mediterranean. Only now are they looking towards the United States, among other markets.