Oxford-based Bimble raises €1.4 million to change how we remember and share places we love

UK startup Bimble, the app and platform that can easily collect, remember and share all the places we love, has launched with €1.4 million of angel funding, coming from a coveted list of early-stage technology investors. 

Founded in 2017, Bimble is named after the charming old English word for “a leisurely walk or journey” (Oxford English Dictionary). We all know how much we learn about a place after taking a trip. But where do we all keep this information, that now feels so obvious to you but that would be really valuable to others? It stays in your head, right? Bimble is taking your ‘Place Knowledge’ and giving it it’s own home. A stylish repository for your favourite places, Bimble helps you to effortlessly create and remember personalised place and travel lists, and share them with like-minded people on its iOS app and platform.

Co-founded by Francesa Howland and Tomi Novak, the feisty fledgling business has spent the last 12 months developing its unique placelist technology, and has already built a community of 60,000 through beta testing. Placelists are simple to create and share: like a playlist for your places. With this new tech, Bimble aims to do with places what Spotify has done for music.

And its new funding round will help it get there, backed by a consortium of business angels with strong digital and AI track records across travel, retail, fashion, and subscription-based models, including Dimitris Panagopoulos, one of the original Net-a-Porter backers (who led the round for Bimble), Rupert Rittson-Thomas and Julian Granville. A third of the investment comes from female angels committed to backing other female entrepreneurs.  

The company will use the cash injection to strengthen its marketing and product teams, in addition to further developing the platform and app. Bimble’s extensive product roadmap means it will also be releasing new features to the iOS app every month for the foreseeable future as part of its commitment to building a state of the art, next generation, community media platform.

CEO and co-founder, Francesca Howland said, “If the question is ‘where?’ Bimble is the answer. How many times have you discovered or been recommended somewhere to go, only to find that you either forget about it, misplace the pull-out or it disappears into a digital Bermuda Triangle? We created Bimble after realising there are thousands of place recommendations shared every day, but no simple way to collect these and pass them on. As we looked more closely at the opportunity, we simply couldn’t believe that no one was doing this already. We have spent a year getting to grips with our members and what motivates them. Through the app, you can curate the places that mean something to you, helping you and your favourite people better enjoy the world around you.”

Commenting on the investment, Dimitris Panagopoulos said, “My three investment criteria are a belief in the product for being a true innovation, its potential to be globally scalable and my complete trust in the founder. I have every confidence in the vision for Bimble and that Francesca will deliver it. Bimble offers us a meaningful, creative and life-enhancing digital community; quite different from the social media platforms of the last 10 years.”

Whats more, the startup has also been selected for the Google Digital Accelerator Programme – an invite only partnership where Google partners with a select few high potential brands that have large growth goals, a lot of ambition and the potential to grow at scale. Via the programme, Google’s dedicated App Development team will be made available to achieve Bimble’s growth goals. 

The business has also formed a partnership with early-stage tech supporter, easyJet – meaning places featured in easyJet Traveller will be added to the airline magazine’s Bimble page each month making it easy for users to add them to their own lists via a simple click.