Rafat Ali, founder of paidContent, has launched Skift, a website for travel industry news, data, and services, called Skift. The startup, described by Ali as “a new breed of media company.” Content on the site comes in four forms: human curated, software-aggregated, licensed, and original reporting. Ali co-founded the company with Jason Clampet, former senior online editor at Frommers.
Ali told paidContent that, “There are a lot of existing siloed publications, like Aviation Weekly and cruise industry magazines. There are frequent-flyer blogs and things like that. But there’s nothing in the travel industry that brings it all together in a cohesive, information-led effort. We are in a good position to build that.” As the site grows it will add news content for business travelers and eventually plans to launch subscription-based data, services, and other tools. for example, SkiftData will collect publicly available travel data for local tourism statistics and airport information.
Ali funded the site on his own until its launch and has raised $500,000 in an angel round from investors like Jason Hirschhorn, former MySpace president, and Gordon Crovitz, former Wall Street Journal publisher.