Adventurely joins Backstage Capital’s LA Accelerator!
Amazing friends, family, & colleagues, it’s with utmost levels of excitement that i’m SO pleased to share that Adventurely, the startup that I founded to serve the solo travel market, is now VC backed and has joined the Backstage Capital LA Accelerator! 1800 startups applied, and Adventurely made the cut to the top 25! I’m beyond honored, thrilled, and excited; and I can’t wait to meet the Backstage Staff in person, along with the founders behind the other startups that are joining me in LA: Lacqerbar, Lorals, Optimal Solar, SnapStays, & Unomi.
For those of you that have been following my Founder journey, you know that it hasn’t been an easy one. My team and I 100% bootstrapped Adventurely for close to two years. We had no seed funding whatsoever, there was zero ad spend (or budget) whatsoever, and it was completely and physically impossible for me get a “friends & family” round from my parents- because they both died of cancer during the launch and bootstrapping of Adventurely. Additionally, there was/is also the elephant in the room for my particular founder profile: statistics show that the founder demographic I belong to, typically and historically gets essentially zero % of available VC funding, solely because of the specific mix of my gender & race.
But despite those challenges, I fiercely believed in Adventurely and in myself as a founder; the team and I grew Adventurely to 3500 users on our beta app; Adventurely received best new app accolades by Skift, Hipmunk, & Refinery 29; solo travel users really loved and were excited about what we were building; and important brands in the travel industry were literally asking us to scale. As a founder, I couldn’t shake the desire to serve customers that I knew were waiting for something like Adventurely in the solo travel market, and I didn’t want to give up on creating the perfect solution for them.
The momentum was strong and I had a lot of friends lovingly say that they expected me to announce a VC round secured at any moment, but when bootstrapping reached slightly shy of the 2 year mark, and things got far beyond any cognizable level of sustainability to continue, the team and I were left with no other option but to suspend operations indefinitely. And that, combined with my family losses, left me feeling absolutely and utterly … blank.
So I did the only thing that made sense to feel better again: I traveled solo.
What started as a trip to Medellin for a few weeks to explore Colombia, evolved into a year-long whirlwind trip across the world to Mexico, Spain, Malta, France, Bulgaria, Istanbul, Croatia, Montenegro, Serbia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, & the UK. Travel brought back JOY into my life. It sparked my wonderment again; and it brought back my passion! And you’d be shocked at how easy it was to do on the most basic of budgets as a “slow” solo traveler. Travel also also brought me back to the big question that first inspired me to launch Adventurely: why the heck was the travel industry ignoring the needs of solo travelers?!
72% of American women are now traveling solo; digital nomads (a sub-group of solo travelers) are now a mainstream travel demographic; and statistics also show that 1 in 4 people world-wide are now traveling solo. That’s essentially 1.8 Billion people traveling solo. 1.8 Billion people that I have a mission to serve and make happy with Adventurely .
During my year of personal solo travel (post Adventurely’s first launch) I realized that the pain points for solo travel were still there and not being solved effectively; that the user base of solo travelers had grown even larger; and ultimately, I got my inspiration and so-called mojo back, to disregard the naysayers, and throw myself back in the ring to launch Adventurely again. And here I am today, beyond proud, and beyond excited, to finally give Adventurely to the world as I always envisioned it, with the support of Backstage.
To my advisors:I can’t thank you enough for believing in me.
To my team members, past & present: thank you for sharing your amazing talents with me.
To Dreamers & Doers — the rockstar female-founder network i’m a proud founding member of — Thanks for having my back!
To my friends & family: I’m here to make you proud.
And to Backstage: I am ALL smiles en route to LA! Thank you for accepting and inviting me into this opportunity!
So what’s next? Here’s 4 ways you can be a part of this!
- Follow Adventurely’s journey on the gram at @Adventurely;
2. Feel free to share any feedback you might have about solo travel and what we’re building with us at email@example.com;
3. Sign up for the big announcement of the official beta re-launch in the next upcoming weeks at Getadventurely.com/Signup! Some basics are live on the site, but a whole lot more is coming soon!
4. And last but not least- if you or someone you know LOVES travel and is a rockstar in the making for a great social media + design intern, please send a brief paragraph about yourself/your work (we can skip the cover letter!) and your resume to firstname.lastname@example.org
Peace, joy & solo travel!!!!