Founded in 1995, Venere Net represents an exceptional case in which an Italian company has managed to succeed at an international level in the e-business world, traditionally dominated by American and other foreign companies.
The birth of Venere: 4 young partners launch Venere.com and develop the first beta version of the hotel booking engine. In February 1995, online marketing begins for contracted hotels in Rome and Florence. The first reservations arrive in June 1995, and Venere.com starts ranking highly in the top search engines.
First strategic partnerships: "Venere - Italy Hotel Reservation" offers an important contribution to bringing Italian tourism online by taking up partnerships with major tourist associations and by opening two other important markets: Venice and Milan.
Further growth: Venere's organizational structure grows and Venere.com rapidly becomes market leader of the Travel/Accommodation segment in Italy.
First outside investments: the venture capital fund Kiwi II acquires stakes in Venere. Now, not only does Venere.com become market leader in Italy, it also starts to contract hotels in major European cities. 2001 is also the year of birth of Venere’s affiliate business, allowing other web sites to utilize our content to increase their online business.
International offices: thanks to a second round of external investments, Venere becomes a Joint Stock Company (Venere Net SPA). In order to further expand business internationally - at this point the company is already well known outside Italy – Venere.com opens international offices in London (Venere UK LTD) and Paris (Venere France SARL).
Introduction of hotel reviews: the number of European hotels increases quickly and so does the number of Venere.com users. At the same time, the company is becoming increasingly international itself, with multilingual staff members from various nationalities keeping up with high demand in a rapidly evolving market.
Venere.com launches the community aspect in online tourism with the introduction of hotel reviews. This useful tool allows consumers to express personal opinions about the hotels they have actually stayed at, and becomes a major strength for Venere.com. The hotel reviews feature continues to be a distinguishing strength for us, helping users to choose their accommodation. To date, Venere.com boasts 350,000 independent hotel reviews written by guests that booked their stay with us.
New headquarters: Venere moves into its new headquarters in Via della Camilluccia and launches a Travel Agent Affiliate Program. Venere.com arrives at the milestone of 10,000 accommodations with online booking, and 1,000,000 reservations made on its system.
Venere heads across the Atlantic: ambitious plans to enter the US market lead to Venere's first New York hotel.
Consolidation: Venere.com consolidates its image on an international level and launches several visibility programs for contracted hotels.
A record year: 2006 is without a doubt a record year for Venere.com, with 16,000 accommodations online, 70 million registered users and bookings totalling over 300 million Euro.
Advent International: upon the withdrawal of Kiwi II (33% shareholder), the leading global private equity fund Advent International acquires a 60% stake in Venere Net.
Expedia Inc., the American Travel specialist, acquires 100% of Venere Net and a new age awaits the company.