Tablecross Inc., the provider of byFood.com, a leading food tourism platform for inbound travelers to Japan, has secured 2.24M USD in Series A funding to expand recruitment, marketing, and system integration development.
The investment was led by Shoku no Mirai Fund No.1 LPS as the lead investor, with JTB Corp., VELTRA Corporation, and PR TIMES, Inc. as underwriters. With this investment, Tablecross has received a cumulative procurement amount of approximately 4.1M USD.
Moving byFood into the future
After a slow in tourism due to the Covid-19 pandemic, inbound tourists are returning to Japan. ByFood.com's monthly GMV increased by 1453% compared to 2022, and growth is accelerating. The Japanese government has set a goal to increase the number of inbound tourists to 60 million by 2030. With the support of its Series A investors, Tablecross has renewed its goal of creating and refining its original food experiences that attract travelers worldwide.
Tablecross's efforts to revitalize inbound tourism in Japan were recognized by the 2022 UNWTO Global Gastronomy Tourism Startup Competition, where the company won the top award, and the 2022 World Luxury Travel Awards, selected as the best OTA (Online Travel Agency) in Japan.
Shoku no Mirai No.1 Investment Limited Partnership, Kemuri Ventures LLC
Kemuri Ventures will support Tablecross's business growth and reach, including restaurants, local farmers, and food tech, by collaborating with domestic and overseas food-related businesses.
JTB is developing a unique solution for inbound promotion utilizing byFood.com for local governments and DMOs to improve reception for local inbound travelers to Japan. JTB will also focus on advertising, distribution, and sales utilizing the JTB network.
PR TIMES Inc.
PR TIMES will propose joint packages with byFood and webinars to promote information dissemination and support for tourism.
Veltra plans to connect byFood and Linktivity, used by 180 transportation companies nationwide, to accelerate regional tourism.
ByFood.com is an online gastronomy tourism platform for inbound travelers, offering Japanese food experiences (food tours, cooking classes, etc.), a restaurant reservation system, and an online gourmet market. In addition, as part of the SDGs (sustainable development goals), Tablecross donates ten school lunches per reservation/online market order to children in developing countries. Since its establishment, byFood has donated approximately 380,000 school lunches.