AllTrails, a platform for discovering hiking and biking trails, secured $150M from British investment firm Permira.
Profitable since 2017, the digital resource wants to capture more of the COVID-19 pandemic outdoor recreation boom.
AllTrails, founded in 2010, has become a go-to for anyone seeking nearby trails and recreation areas.
The company’s database and app provides trail maps and descriptions while crowdsourcing community photos and commentary. The result is the most comprehensive, robust resource of its kind — it’s on track to list 300,000 trails across 200 countries.
AllTrails’ basic service comes free of charge through an ad-supported framework, where users can look up a trail by location without commitment. However, its Pro subscription provides added value, eliminating ads while enabling offline map guidance, real-time route alerts, emergency status notifications, and map overlays displaying weather, pollen, and air quality.
And though there are no winners in a global pandemic, AllTrails has hit impressive milestones as exercisers and first-time adventurers have flocked en masse to the great outdoors:
- 171% more user-logged hikes in 2020 vs. 2019
- Recently eclipsed 40 million app downloads and 30 million registered users
- Attracted 100 million visitors to its site in the past 12 months
- Reached 1 million paying Pro subscribers in January 2021
With sustained interest in the outdoors, AllTrails’ new investment—adding to a $75M fundraising round in 2018—will go primarily toward product development. In creating such value, AllTrails will seek to turn more of its free users into subscribers, as well as scale its international footprint in the surging outdoor economy.
Outdoors is In
While gym attendance has ebbed and flowed through lockdowns and re-openings, the outdoor revival—even beyond hiking and biking—has continued its uphill trek.
- 8.1M more Americans hiked last year than in 2019.
- 10.1M households camped for the first time in 2020, a 5x increase from 2019.
- The hiking & outdoor gear market was valued at $6.6B in 2021.
In AllTrails territory, resources and media for the outdoors crowd have also seen exponential growth. Taking notice, VC has caught a whiff of the mountain air and is seeing green.
- Hipcamp, the “Airbnb of camping”, closed $57M in a January Series C.
- Media company Outside secured a $150M Series B in February 2021.
- Fitness activity tracking platform Strava raised $110M in late 2020, valuing the company north of $1.5B.
Zooming out: The outdoors, something that has always been right out the door, has emerged as the de facto, no-barrier outlet for physical and mental well-being. Missing, though, is a social community exclusive to the outdoorsy and adventure-curious to interact. With discovery and subscription model already in place, AllTrails will need to stoke its digital campfire to keep its growing userbase engaged — and paying.