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Think twice brfore Booking with Sona Tours

Having booked Mini 4 Day UK Break in December 2023 and paid in full for travel 6 months later. In February 2024 one person in our group developed medical condition and is unable to travel. In March 2024 I went to the Kingsbury Office to find out if I can cancel as it is more than 12 weeks prior to departure, I was told I would lose 30% of cost (not deposit) or the second option was change of name which will still cost £50.00 to amend, which would take less than a minute to do on their system. They suggested to wait till May 2024 in case things change. I went again in May 2024 which is now 7 weeks prior to departure and the medical condition of the person hasn’t improved. I asked if they could justify the charge for name change for the Mini UK Break they refused to give any breakdown or details, I asked them to provide details of the hotel that we will be staying in, I was told they don’t have that details either as they only process and finalize the booking 2 weeks prior to departure date. I was told that they plan their whole year’s holiday in advance but could not provide hotel details. If this is the case what are they charging me £50.00 for? As I wasn’t happy with the explanation given I asked if I could speak with Chetan Shah (Director) hoping he would understand and reduce the charge. I suggested that if we can talk privately as I did not want to discuss in front of his staff or customers. This did not happen. Anyway I explained my situation but he was still not prepared to understand and was adamant about the charge. I queried about his T & C with no clarity or transparency, he brushed me off saying that T & C are approved by ATOL and ABTA. Their brochure does not show any cancellation or change of name charges, how can this be approved by ABTA or ATOL makes you wonder. Cancellation charges are only shown once you are issued with the confirmation of travel. The majority of T & C only applies to overseas travel and they incorporated these as standard to their Local travel as well !!! During our conversation I was hinted many times that I was wasting his time, this is kind of arrogant behaviour, attitude and professionalism one would not expect from Company Director. No customer care or satisfaction shown, just imagine than, what would you expect from Sales Staff. If you check the responses and replies to other reviewer’s comment, there is no remorse or empathy from Sona Tours. It is always customer’s or their third party selection’s fault, never theirs. They even don’t add name to their replies, so that you cannot hold anyone to be accountable, this just shows how arrogant the Company is. They are also prepared to take a cancer patient to court and demand legal fees, what chance has anyone else got. I wouldn’t call this as an Exquisite Personal Service, neither Outstanding Value. ATOL, ABTA bonding may be good if the company goes burst, not in this case as their T & C’s are there for their benefit and interest and not for customers. Even after so many negative reviews Sona Tours have made no effort to change. Questions still arises in one’s mind how does ABTA, ATOL after their constant monitoring can let Sona Tours get away with their Code of Practice. If anyone wants to book their holidays or their mini breaks please think twice as there are many Asian Tour Operators available in the Country. As we have no other options left I am just hoping that our forth coming mini break is not as disappointing and stressful as this experience even before it has started, hope the hotel and food would be of good standard. In their final paragraph of all their reply they audaciously mention about “your confidence has not been affected to an extent”…….etc. My confidence in Sona Tours is Zero.

Date of experience : 13 May 2024

Room for improvement,

We faced a lot of issues, we were told seats were allocated, which weren't, so ended, being scattered & got seats at the back.Not so happy with the 2 guides, the Indian one was not very knowledgeable of Japan, any questions we had, he didn't know & couldn't give us an answer. The Japanese guide was very knowledgeable but struggled for words, not very good command of English. Group number was very large, 35, very difficult to cope. No variety of food @ dinner monotonous Indian food. Homeward journey, 8 hours wait, could've got us an earlier flight. Not very good value for price paid. I also, forgot to mention, when l gave Rita, a cheque @ Sona Tours, there was an error, at 1st, she asked me to initial it but on 2nd thoughts, she asked me to write a new cheque. After few days, she calls to say cheque has been sent back, she doesn't know the reason. Ultimately, they said l had pay £20/ because the cheque was sent back, saying l hadn't signed it. Isn't the duty of sonatours to check details before they accept it? It was an error on their part & make money of me £20/ l would never recommend anyone to take sonatours again. There are so many negative reviews, l wish l had read them, before booking with them. I have learnt my lesson.

Date of experience : 15 April 2024

Reply from Sonatours

Dear Hilda We wish to point out that it is always our intention to provide the best possible service to all our clients. Any feedback from our clients is therefore, of paramount importance and invaluable to the quality control of our operation. It is always disappointing to be told of instances where a client’s holiday arrangements may not have proved entirely as anticipated and we have, therefore, noted your observations with regard to your recent holiday. If we may clarify, this is a group tour and tickets are not bought individually, thus the airline allocates the seats. I know for a fact that this group were lucky to sit all together whether it been front or back. The same methodology applies for hotels on allocation of rooms as depends on their inventory. On the point of the tour manager’s responsibility is to ensure that he manages and has all in control, ensuring everything runs smoothly on the tour. The guide was excellent, as what we have heard from other travelers. Sorry if it did not meet to your standards. Surely you must have read the itinerary, as we clearly mention that we provide Indian Dinner. We have been running these tours over 15 years and we have had experience of the meals , especially for those vegetarians as they do use Fish oil in cooking. Certainly you must have tried the local cuisines at lunchtime or breakfast in the hotel. Reference to your cheque, the onus is on you. We are not a financial institution. We had asked you to do a bank transfer at the first place. Which you did later after the cheque bounced. In closing, we do thank you for bringing the above matters to our attention and would once again like to apologise for any disappointment and inconvenience caused. Further, we hope that, despite the above, you had enjoyed your holiday overall as seen from the pictures. Regards Sona Tours

Tour taken was Canada Alaska tour

Tour taken was Canada Alaska tour. Guide was very professional and knowledgeable. Canada on land itinerary was good except last two days. Hells Gate excursion was not worth the time and money spent. Staff members at the office in London has inconsistent answers for the same questions asked by individual group members. We paid for category 2c balcony room but ended up getting lower category 2d room.

Date of experience : 08 August 2023

Dear Bharat Acharya, Many thanks for sharing your review and your positive feedback on the guide and the itinerary. To clarify we had a zoom meeting before the tour departed and all was explained with FAQs at the end too. Furthermore, you had the option not to book Hells Gate excursion which was only CAD$40 (£20). Regards to the cabin if you wanted a specific cabin the price was higher, but you opted for the allocated balcony cabin we had. These contracted cabins are allocated by the cruise as we do a group booking with them. Else the specific one will have been booked at the time of your booking with a much higher price. Please accept our apologies on not getting the balcony cabin as you wished, but overall, I hear you all had a good time, and you joined our group for the whale watching tour. Kind Regards Sona Tours

4 day Scotland Highlands trip aug 2023

We took the 4 days Scotland Highlands tour in August 2023(17th - 20th) and by end of fourth day we realised that Sona travels had arranged a bus travel for 4 days with few sightseeing spots. One of the most basic tours with no facilities in the bus. No WiFi, no charging points and even the toilet had restricted use with zero water facilities. Coming to the tour itinerary - the first day started with a delay of 1 hour. We were not provided with the tour manager contact details and no bus information. Cable car in Ben Nevis was cancelled due to weather issues but there was no alternative arranged. What a shame! Extra charge for boat ride in Loch Lomond. Edinburgh castle visit was arranged on a festival day which made the entire sightseeing very stressful and delayed. Most of the spots were just shown from outside or while being inside the bus. One of the worst tour experiences. Last day ended worst with no sufficient stops for toilets. Tour manager - The tour guide/manager had zero knowledge about these historical beauties. She barely knew anything about the city or any basic information. She was polite and hospital. However there was zero entertainment throughout the trip. It expected that when we are given some positive experience. The only positives were the dinner for first two nights and the driver....who drove very safe and maintained the timings. Hotel - As promised 3 star it was not even a budget stay. The rooms were very basic with no facilities like water bottle, phone, AC or cleaning of sheets. We had request for towel change. Only positive was the breakfast....hot and fresh continental range. I will never recommend this travels to anyone. It's a waste of money experience wise.

Date of experience : 20 August 2023

Dear Deepti Iyer, It is always disappointing to be told of instances where a client’s holiday arrangements may not have proved entirely as anticipated and we have, therefore, noted your observations about your recent booking. We are very sorry. To clarify, this is an escorted group COACH tour and we have published the detailed itinerary with other information in particularize all the sightseeing’s, optional tours, and other matters, such as transport (coach), weather and accommodation too. Regarding the delay, we cannot control the traffic being a road closure due to an accident which was the case in yours as our first pickup was on time. Same with the crowd visiting these public and historic sightseeing during August holiday season. We have got great reviews of this guide as seen on the reviews here. We do sincerely appreciate for you positive feedback on the driver, guide and the meals. Finally, we hope that your confidence has not been affected to an extent that it would prevent you from choosing our company again for your holiday requirements. Kind Regards Sona Tours

Never book with Sona Tours

On 11th February 2022 I booked a package holiday with Sona Tours to go to Alaska. We were supposed to go in August 2022 and there were 15 of us going. We booked the trip in February and each paid £100 deposit. Unfortunately in April I was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer and would not be able to go on this holiday. My husband went to their office immediately to inform them that we would need to cancel our place on the trip and I sent an email on 25th April confirming the cancellation. We did not hear anything back from Sona Tours. In June, we received an email demanding we pay £3250 (half the cost of the holiday) as a cancellation fee. As you can imagine, this was a huge shock to us and not something we could afford as we had spent a lot of money on my cancer treatment. They also pretended that they could not find our original email informing them of our cancellation (but later they found it). We hoped under the circumstances they would be more understanding of our situation, but they demonstrated no empathy for the toll this was taking on my mental health. Meanwhile my husband contacted our travel insurance, who were extremely supportive, and they thankfully told us that they will pay the amount to Sona Tours directly. We informed Sona Tours of this but instead they sent us a court order and a deadline to pay the amount. They did not want to deal with our insurance company, they only wanted us to pay them. In the end our insurance company paid them £3250 but we still had to pay the court fee (because it’s in their T&C’s that we need to pay the court fee) of £205. They final vulgar act Sona Tours did, was they refused to give us back our deposit of £200 after they had received their payment, and decided to take this as their court fee. I am writing this to highlight what a terrible company Sona Tours is and how disgusting their behaviour has been towards me. Their emails, particularly from Chetan, were extremely rude and threatening. Had it not been for my daughters, who had to respond to them on my behalf because I was too unwell. I should not have had to deal with this stress shortly after being diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer and having to go through chemo and surgery. I urge anyone considering booking a holiday via Sona Tours to think twice about it and go through their unfair terms and conditions with a fine tooth comb so you know what to expect in case anything should go wrong. I hope this helps prevent someone else from going through what I have had to go through with them.

Date of experience : 11 February 2022

Dear Dipti Shah, It is always disappointing to be told of instances where a client’s holiday arrangements may not have proved entirely as anticipated and we have, therefore, noted your observations about your recent booking. We are very sorry. The facts are that when you booked, signed, and agreed to our Terms and Conditions, we had explained about the low deposit scheme, cancellations and recommended to have a travel insurance and all well covered in our T & C. The original booking form with T & C were returned to you, as we kept a scan copy. We are fully ABTA and ATOL bonded thus prepare our T& C accordingly. Despite the many demands requested for the balance you had not responded. Only when the matter went legal, you initiated the matter with the insurance. Any insurance will not liaise with us as we are a third party to them, and we have no contractual agreement as you expected us to liaise with them. This matter could have resolved with ease. Finally, we hope that your confidence has not been affected to an extent that it would prevent you from choosing our company again for your holiday requirements. Kind Regards Sona Tours

My awful expriance with sonatours

I booked with sona tours twice before that’s my third time this experience was so bad they didn’t stay with the planned day the driver lost several time took wrong turns we spend the whole day on the coach than the Indian food place was non vegetarian instead of a halal food as I request on the application and it was awful experience , than the hotel was good looking the rooms air condition was not working in either of those nights and Tv was not working in my room complaint to Receiption no results and daughter got bitted by bed bugs awfully the bathroom door lock not working none our bedsheets wore changed . Than tour guide was not so nice he was busy guiding his native peoples.I requested to seat with my family the agent in the office said the tour guide will arrange it than the tours guide also said the once we get all the people than his going to sort out our seats but these 3 day tour he never sorted it out my family we all seat far from each other .than the Disneyland day tour guide give out Disney tickets but not my family he keep saying he has my ticket but didn’t give it us until I got bit angry my kids wore upset not having the tickets.I paid more money as my little one didn’t go on the offer so I paid full ticket price for all of us .experience this rubbish time it would be much better to take euro star never take this service again in my life I would advise everyone better to us other service than this you don’t get full day tour we all stack in the coach for whole first day.

Date of experience : 18 August 2023

Dear Mrs R Ali It is always disappointing to be told of instances where a client’s holiday arrangements may not have proved entirely as anticipated and we have, therefore, noted your observations about your recent booking. We are very sorry. To clarify, this is an escorted group COACH tour, and your booking came in late, less than 2 weeks before departure, after we had closed sales, as you insisted and have travelled with us thus, we accommodated you. We had explained you the reason for paying extra. Which was the contracted ticket to Disney needs to be booked before 30days and we got the group tickets in advance, delivered to our office. Whereas yours was different due to the late booking. Regarding seating arrangement, all the seats were allocated in the bus on first come first serve basis as then not fair to move others to accommodate your family and was communicated at the time of booking. We did request other passengers during the tour, but not keen to move. We were sorry to read of your disappointment about your accommodation. Without wishing to appear unsympathetic, we confirm that the service provided by the hotel is outside of our direct control. We are sorry to read the problems you encountered with your room however we do hope you will appreciate this matter is beyond our direct control. Finally, we hope that your confidence has not been affected to an extent that it would prevent you from choosing our company again for your holiday requirements. Kind Regards Sona Tours

Scotland tour Sona travels

Well organized, comfortable tour in luxurious coach and a very efficient,safe and cordial driver Abid.Tour guide Saba has been an excellent guide, very friendly,lively and jolly person. Looking forward to have her in upcoming Cornwall trip too.Food and stay has been too good and non monotonous throughout the trip.

Date of experience : 16 May 2024

Recently went on a 4 day trip to…

Recently went on a 4 day trip to Scotland with Sona Tours. Highly recommend. What an amazing trip & a wonderful time we had A very luxury coach driven by an expert driver - Ali -assisted by a lovely tour manager Sabah with a 24/7 smile on her face No complaints what so ever - every moment was tailored to perfection- Sabah is already doing a great job & wish the almighty gives her enough strength to go further higher & higher up

Date of experience : 03 August 2021

Dear Rekha Haria, Many thanks for your review and giving us an opportunity to serve you. We look forward to giving you exceptional service again. Have a wonderful and a pleasant journey. Kind Regards and be safe Sona Tours Team

We went to South America on 11th April…

We went to South America on 11th April 2024 with sona tours. itinerary was very good and well organised. In 24 days we covered four countries and being a vegetarian we didn’t struggle for food, All hotels and restaurants were very good. And to enjoy this kind of holiday you need good tour leader and our tour leader DJ was excellent, He treated all of us like family members no matter how busy he was , DJ always had time for us. He is very professional and experienced. We’re already planning another holiday with Sona tours and we’re hoping DJ will be with us. Thank you very much DJ

Date of experience : 11 April 2024

Electrifying Japan

Electrifying Japan Ajay was brilliant, this is a very comprehensive tour,visit a lot of sites, but Group size too big.

Date of experience : 11 April 2023

Dear Bimal DAve, Many thanks for your review and giving us an opportunity to serve you. We look forward to giving you exceptional service again. Have a wonderful and a pleasant journey. Kind Regards and be safe Sona Tours Team

Excellent tour company

Excellent tour company! They take care of each and every detail with utmost care. We enjoyed a lot with our 7 month old daughter.

Date of experience : 03 May 2024

Dear Mrs Dugar, Many thanks for your review and giving us an opportunity to serve you. We look forward to giving you exceptional service again. We are happy to hear that you have made some new friends and look forward to seeing you travel again together with Sona Tours. We have posted some pictures in our facebook.com/sonatours to remind you of your fond memories for your trip to Holland & Belgium. Kindly share amongst your friends. Kind Regards Sona Tours Team

Bali senior citizens

We all senior citizens, ladies went to Bali in Sept 2023 and we had a great time. Despite the food was not to our expectations but Sona tours changed the menus to Indian food which made us feel like not missing home. They had chosen great hotels with amazing breakfast menu. The itinerary with all the sight seeings went smoothly. The local guide was very helpful but had a mix English which confused us but gave us a laugh. Will recommend Sona tours for Bali tour.

Date of experience : 26 September 2023

Dear Ranjna, Many thanks for your review and giving us an opportunity to serve you. We look forward to giving you exceptional service again. We are happy to hear that you have made some new friends and look forward to seeing you travel again together with Sona Tours. We have posted some pictures in our facebook.com/sonatours to remind you of your fond memories for your trip to Bali. Kindly share amongst your friends. Kind Regards Sona Tours Team

Electrifying Japan tour Sep 23

Overall a very good tour although a little hectic. DJ & Emiko looked after us very well. Emiko was a great guide and very informative. The hotels & breakfasts were all great apart from the set breakfast at Sengokuhara Prince Hotel. On the plus side the hotel's Onsen facilities were great. All Indian dinners were good though spicy. Personally we would prefer less chillies, however we understand that Sona has to cater for the whole group. With regards to the non-Indian dinner of pasta & pizza, we would have preferred more than the one slice of pizza and less of the pasta. Thank you Sona for the wonderful surprise of the sushi cooking lesson. It was a lot of fun and we really enjoyed it.Overall we had a great time and look forward to booking another tour in the near future.

Date of experience : 19 September 2023

Hi Harish, Thank you for taking the time to leave a review. We're glad to hear that you had a positive experience.. Kindly visit our www.facebook.com/sonatours to recollect your memories of pictures on your Japan tour and you most welcome to share it. https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.820692206725034&type=3 Kind Regards, Sona Tours Team

Excellent service

We thank Sona Tours, through Mr Vikas Shah for booking and organising a wonder trip for us to the Masai Mara. We really appreciate the service given to us by Vikas Shah, Sona Tours. This is the second trip booked through Sona Tours, and we look forward to booking more trips with Mr Vikas Shah, Sona Tours, as their service and recommendations are fantastic. Thank you Vikas, Sona Tours. Best wishes Priya and Hetul Chandaria

Date of experience : 12 October 2020

I have just returned from an 8 days tour of Iceland with Sona Tours. Chetan, the Tour Manager's capability to manage the group was excellent,very good social skills,sharing his knowledge and experience was welcomed.The coach driver too was full of historical and geographical knowledge which matched my University lectures'.Hats off to him.The itinerary given was brief,but when experienced after visiting each location was beyond expectation. Sona Tours have selected the best sites of Iceland.Value for money memorable trip. Pratima (Bena) Patel

Date of experience : 30 March 2022

Dear Bena Patel, Many thanks for your review and giving us an opportunity to serve you. We look forward to giving you exceptional service again. Have a wonderful and a pleasant journey. Kind Regards and be safe Sona Tours Team

Amazing experience

We take this opportunity to thank Sona Tours for an amazing experience to samburu game reserve this was our 1st time and definitely not the last, driver was on time on pickup with a happy and informative personality.. even the provision for snacks and small gifts made a huge impact on welcoming us.. definitely will book again and highly recommend them for all your bookings.

Date of experience : 21 June 2021

We can’t find any faults with…

We can’t find any faults with sonatours, Best tour manager and local guide. Management was good,every little thing was put on tour,will recommend to friends and family. Thanks everybody .

Date of experience : 09 April 2022

Dear Haresh Patel, Many thanks for your review and giving us an opportunity to serve you. We look forward to giving you exceptional service again. Have a wonderful and a pleasant journey. Kind Regards and be safe Sona Tours Team

Just returned from a 8 day Iceland…

Just returned from a 8 day Iceland holiday with Sona Tours and once again the Management was superb, the Coach driver was excellent in his dual role as Guide and Driver, and the winter conditions in Iceland intact added to the experience and pleasure of of the whole trip.Thank you Sona Tours

Date of experience : 28 March 2022

Dear Raj Patel, Many thanks for your review and giving us an opportunity to serve you. We look forward to giving you exceptional service again. Have a wonderful and a pleasant journey. Kind Regards and be safe Sona Tours Team

Worth it! Thoroughly enjoyed the tour…

We all have thoroughly enjoyed the tour where the highlights being excursions like Cable Car Ride at the Nevis Ranges and Cruise ride at the Lake District. Overall food and hotel experience was also quite satisfying. The best part of the tour was the Lead Tour Manager Miss. Saba, co-manager Miss. Chandani and the driver Mr. Mark. Tour managers were not only able to guide us and educate us about the locations but also made sure to keep our interest going during silo hours by playing games, having individual discussions with everyone and encouraging them to look for the best out of this tour. Saba and Chandani also helped us in celebrating my dad's surprise 70th birthday celebration in a very unique and beautiful way. This gesture strongly proves how Sona Tours staff takes personal efforts to bring smiles on their customers faces. Highly obliged with the way Saba and Chandani has managed the overall trip, Kudos to them. Mark is a great driver and quite patient, calm and composed person. Hat's off to his driving skills and knowledge of the roads. I believe that 3 of them are the real assets of the Sona Tours and truly deserve a huge round of applause and appreciation. I would highly recommend Sona Tours to friends and family after such a wonderful Scotland Highlands tour experience.

Date of experience : 09 August 2022

Well organised.

Hi Jatin Mania, We are delighted you enjoyed your Japan tour with Sona Tours! Your feedback is much appreciated! We're thrilled to hear that you've had an enjoyable holiday and we appreciate your recommendation to bring your friends and family along. You can view all your pics on our FB Japan Sept 2023 Album on www.facebook.com/sonatours and you most welcome to share the shame to your album Kind Regards and be safe Sona Tours Team

  • Testimonies

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Sona Home

Reservations

a hotel room with a large window

All reservations are handled through Resy, or Opentable. Kindly click the links below to book a table.

Resy | OpenTable

Alternatively, you may e-mail [email protected] with your name, phone number, preferred date(s), time, and number of guests.

Should you wish to speak to a reservationist, please call 212-203-6460.

Please note that SONA books tables up to 30 days in advance.

We look forward to welcoming you!

Email Signup

Sona, a frontline workforce management platform, raises $27.5M with eyes on US expansion

Sona co-founder Steffen Wulff Petersen flanked by Ben Dixon (left) and Oli Johnson (right)

Sona , a workforce management platform for frontline employees, has raised $27.5 million in a Series A round of funding.

More than two-thirds of the U.S. workforce are reportedly in frontline jobs , which might be anything from customer service and healthcare to retail environments and hospitality. But managing this vast workforce, ensuring roles are filled and service is delivered, is resource intensive. That is where Sona has been setting out to help since its foundation three years ago.

“Sona intelligently deploys our customers’ largest cost base — frontline labor,” Sona’s co-founder, Steffen Wulff Petersen , told TechCrunch. “This not only optimizes their cost base, it also directly drives more revenue — you can’t sell food or deliver care without staff being scheduled correctly.”

Founded in London in 2021, Sona helps companies manage just about every facet of their frontline workforce, from shift scheduling, timesheets and soliciting feedback to absence management and connecting with agencies to ensure shifts are covered during staff shortages.

Managers typically access Sona via a web portal, while workers access the platform via a mobile app with which they can complete timesheets, view available shifts and communicate with managers. Companies integrate Sona with their internal systems to ensure all the data flows through and between the various departments and stakeholders.

As one might expect in this day and age, Sona says it uses AI to automate many of the processes involved in managing a workforce, including optimizing rosters using data gleaned from workers’ contracts, such as their terms of employment, working preferences and availability. So, less time-consuming manual admin is the name of the game.

“Running a business with a large frontline workforce is primarily about ensuring the right people are in the right place at the right time,” Sona’s co-founder and CTO, Ben Dixon, told TechCrunch. “Sona becomes the central jumping off point for a large proportion of our customers’ operations, which means we integrate with nearly all of their other systems — from care management and point-of-sale, to single sign-on and ERP (enterprise resource planning). It’s this deep level of integration that facilitates our AI product, because we’re the one system that can provide a unified, real-time view of data across the whole business.”

Besides legacy players such as PeoplePlanner in social care and Selima in hospitality, there is no shortage of well-funded startups targeting a similar space to what Sona operates in — there is ConnectTeam and Homebase for starters, the latter of which announced a $60 million fundraise just last month .

Petersen says that it’s setting out to differentiate from at least some of these companies by focusing on larger enterprises, meshing “consumer-grade design” with features required by more complex multi-site operations.

“Most newer, VC-backed players in the workforce management space are built for SMBs, with an easy and simple self-signup product,” Petersen told TechCrunch. “That’s a great approach for small businesses with 1-10 sites, and there’s millions of those businesses to target. We rarely cross paths with the SMB vendors because enterprise customers need the opposite product — one that handles deep complexity.”

Indeed, Sona’s pitch isn’t that it’s quick to deploy: Petersen states that the demo alone takes three hours, and implementation takes more like several months. “Think Salesforce versus Pipedrive ,” Petersen said. “We pass leads on to some of the SMB vendors when customers don’t meet our enterprise criteria.”

Sona is currently live across the social care and hospitality industries in the U.K., where it counts the likes of Gleneagles and Estelle Manor as customers. With another $27.5 million in the bank, the company is now gearing up to expand further afield — and a clue to its target markets lie in its new lead investor.

The Series A round was led by Menlo Park-based VC firm Felicis , which has previously exited investments like Ring to Amazon , Fitbit to Google and publicly traded Shopify . Other notable backers include Google’s Gradient Ventures, which led Sona’s seed round two years ago . Antler, SpeedInvest, Northzone and Bag Ventures also participated in the latest round.

Sona has now raised north of $40 million since its inception, and the company said it will use its fresh cash injection to “build more advanced AI capabilities” and accelerate its international plans, which will include its first U.S. foray.

“The U.S. will be an important market for Sona. We now have both Felicis and Gradient onboard, have hired our first two U.S.-based employees and have signed our first six-figure Alpha customer,” Petersen said.

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When the founders of Sagetap, Sahil Khanna and Kevin Hughes, started working at early-stage enterprise software startups, they were surprised to find that the companies they worked at were trying…

Deal Dive: Sagetap looks to bring enterprise software sales into the 21st century

This Week in AI: OpenAI moves away from safety

Keeping up with an industry as fast-moving as AI is a tall order. So until an AI can do it for you, here’s a handy roundup of recent stories in the world…

This Week in AI: OpenAI moves away from safety

Adobe comes after indie game emulator Delta for copying its logo

After Apple loosened its App Store guidelines to permit game emulators, the retro game emulator Delta — an app 10 years in the making — hit the top of the…

Adobe comes after indie game emulator Delta for copying its logo

Meta’s latest experiment borrows from BeReal’s and Snapchat’s core ideas

Meta is once again taking on its competitors by developing a feature that borrows concepts from others — in this case, BeReal and Snapchat. The company is developing a feature…

Meta’s latest experiment borrows from BeReal’s and Snapchat’s core ideas

Startups Weekly: It’s the dawning of the age of AI — plus, Musk is raging against the machine

Welcome to Startups Weekly! We’ve been drowning in AI news this week, with Google’s I/O setting the pace. And Elon Musk rages against the machine.

Startups Weekly: It’s the dawning of the age of AI — plus,  Musk is raging against the machine

IndieBio’s SF incubator lineup is making some wild biotech promises

IndieBio’s Bay Area incubator is about to debut its 15th cohort of biotech startups. We took special note of a few, which were making some major, bordering on ludicrous, claims…

IndieBio’s SF incubator lineup is making some wild biotech promises

YouTube TV’s ‘multiview’ feature is now available on Android phones and tablets

YouTube TV has announced that its multiview feature for watching four streams at once is now available on Android phones and tablets. The Android launch comes two months after YouTube…

YouTube TV’s ‘multiview’ feature is now available on Android phones and tablets

Two Santa Cruz students uncover security bug that could let millions do their laundry for free

CSC ServiceWorks provides laundry machines to thousands of residential homes and universities, but the company ignored requests to fix a security bug.

Two Santa Cruz students uncover security bug that could let millions do their laundry for free

Harness the TechCrunch Effect: Host a Side Event at Disrupt 2024

TechCrunch Disrupt 2024 is just around the corner, and the buzz is palpable. But what if we told you there’s a chance for you to not just attend, but also…

Harness the TechCrunch Effect: Host a Side Event at Disrupt 2024

Pitch Deck Teardown: Goodcarbon’s $5.5M seed deck

Decks are all about telling a compelling story and Goodcarbon does a good job on that front. But there’s important information missing too.

Pitch Deck Teardown: Goodcarbon’s $5.5M seed deck

Slack under attack over sneaky AI training policy

Slack is making it difficult for its customers if they want the company to stop using its data for model training.

Slack under attack over sneaky AI training policy

Healthcare company WebTPA discloses breach affecting 2.5 million people

A Texas-based company that provides health insurance and benefit plans disclosed a data breach affecting almost 2.5 million people, some of whom had their Social Security number stolen. WebTPA said…

Healthcare company WebTPA discloses breach affecting 2.5 million people

Microsoft dodges UK antitrust scrutiny over its Mistral AI stake

Microsoft won’t be facing antitrust scrutiny in the U.K. over its recent investment into French AI startup Mistral AI.

Microsoft dodges UK antitrust scrutiny over its Mistral AI stake

Embedded finance is still trendy as accounting automation startup Ember partners with HSBC UK

Ember has partnered with HSBC in the U.K. so that the bank’s business customers can access Ember’s services from their online accounts.

Embedded finance is still trendy as accounting automation startup Ember partners with HSBC UK

Kudos lands $10M for an AI smart wallet that picks the best credit card for purchases

Kudos uses AI to figure out consumer spending habits so it can then provide more personalized financial advice, like maximizing rewards and utilizing credit effectively.

Kudos lands $10M for an AI smart wallet that picks the best credit card for purchases

EU warns Microsoft it could be fined billions over missing GenAI risk info

The EU’s warning comes after Microsoft failed to respond to a legally binding request for information that focused on its generative AI tools.

EU warns Microsoft it could be fined billions over missing GenAI risk info

A US Trustee wants troubled fintech Synapse to be liquidated via Chapter 7 bankruptcy, cites ‘gross mismanagement’

The prospects for troubled banking-as-a-service startup Synapse have gone from bad to worse this week after a United States Trustee filed an emergency motion on Wednesday.  The trustee is asking…

A US Trustee wants troubled fintech Synapse to be liquidated via Chapter 7 bankruptcy, cites ‘gross mismanagement’

Seraphim’s latest space accelerator welcomes nine companies

U.K.-based Seraphim Space is spinning up its 13th accelerator program, with nine participating companies working on a range of tech from propulsion to in-space manufacturing and space situational awareness. The…

Seraphim’s latest space accelerator welcomes nine companies

OpenAI inks deal to train AI on Reddit data

OpenAI has reached a deal with Reddit to use the social news site’s data for training AI models. In a blog post on OpenAI’s press relations site, the company said…

OpenAI inks deal to train AI on Reddit data

X pushes more users to Communities

X users will now be able to discover posts from new Communities that are trending directly from an Explore tab within the section.

X pushes more users to Communities

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Times Power Women 2024: Empowering change and celebrating triumphs of women entrepreneurs

Times Power Women 2024: Empowering change and celebrating triumphs of women entrepreneurs

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