Vancouver’s ToursByLocals lands $33m investment

Vancouver-based ToursByLocals offers private tours in more than 1,000 destinations across the world | Shutterstock

What happened: ToursByLocals raises $33 million from Tritium Partners

Why it matters: The Vancouver-based company says the new capital will be used for everything from additional hiring to improvements to its online marketplace for private tours

A Vancouver company specializing in offering private tours throughout the globe has an extra $33 million in its coffers to boost growth plans.

ToursByLocals Canada Inc. announced Monday (January 13) that it landed the multimillion-dollar sum from a single investor: Tritium Partners LLC, a private equity firm based in Austin, Texas.

The company says it will use the investment to improve the user experience and technology for its online marketplace for private tours.

It also plans to put money into additional hiring and marketing.

ToursByLocals is known for tapping into a network of more than 4,100 locally based tour guides in 938 destinations across 160 countries.

"ToursByLocals stood out as the premier private tour marketplace with the highest quality tours and local guides in the industry. We're thrilled to partner with the ToursByLocals team and look forward to leveraging our capital and resources to support and accelerate their exciting growth trajectory," Tritium partner Brett Shobe said in a statement.

Tritium has invested in other vacation-oriented companies, including U.S.-based RVShare LLC and Vacation Innovations LLC.

“In addition to growth capital, we value the strategic advice offered by both the Tritium team and its network of experienced marketplace executives as we continue to scale up our operations as a leading online travel marketplace," ToursByLocals CEO Paul Melhus said in a statement.

Melhus founded the company in late 2008 with Dave Vincent.

Luciano Bullorsky later joined the pair in the venture.

More than 1.4 million travellers have used the service over the past 11 years.