Tuesday, July 16, 2024
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38. Navan

Founders: Ariel Cohen (CEO), Ilan Twig
Launched: 2015
Headquarters: Palo Alto, California
$1.5 billion
Valuation: $9.2 billion
Key technologies:
Artificial intelligence, cloud computing, machine learning
Travel, enterprise technology
Previous appearances on Disruptor 50 List: 0

Persephone Kavallines 

Corporate travel planning can be a headache. Flights, car rentals and hotels might be booked through different platforms. Payment can be through company cards or could involve reimbursing employees. Navan, formerly called TripActions, is changing the way companies manage travel with an all-in-one platform. The platform can plan the trip and provide employees with credit cards. Having everything travel-related on one platform helps with expense management; companies get better visibility, cost savings, and control over spending. 

Since its launch in 2015 by two veteran entrepreneurs, Navan has grown to provide travel and expense management to companies such as Heineken, Unilever, Adobe, Netflix, Chime and Canva. In the last year, the company doubled its unique users, changed its name to Navan and acquired India-based Tripeur, its fifth acquisition in two years. It also opened offices in Tel Aviv, London, Austin, Bangalore, Sydney, Paris, Amsterdam, San Francisco, and New York. 

Like many companies, it also integrated generative AI. Navan rolled out Ava, an AI-powered chatbot, in May. The assistant can answer customer service questions, book trips, change flights, analyze spend data and help companies find opportunities for savings. In June, the company expanded Navan Connect, its expense management and corporate card solution, so finance teams can use Navan without changing corporate cards. 

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The closely watched company, which is reportedly targeting an IPO in April of next year, added to its leadership team in recent months. The company named Rich Liu, its former chief revenue officer, as CEO of Navan Travel in April, and at the time of his rehiring, the company described Liu as “an expert on scaling companies from seed to IPO and beyond.” 

Navan hasn’t escaped the economic uncertainty looming over companies and corporate spending. The company laid off 5% of its workforce in December, or a total of 145 people. The company is also facing more competition as expense management startups, and fellow Disruptors, Ramp and Brex, are expanding into travel. The company’s last round of fundraising was in October 2022 when it raised $150 million in debt and $154 million in equity, giving the company a valuation of $9.2 billion.

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