In an interview with OZY, entrepreneur Melissa Yang talks about her role as co-founder and chief technology officer at Tujia, a Chinese company that offers services similar to Airbnb.
Tuija was founded in 2011 and has grown exponentially since then. This year, Tuija will have 50 million vacant homes in China. Though Tuija’s services are similar to Airbnb, Yang insists it is different and that China is no longer a copycat nation. One distinction is that Tuija caters to those consumers looking to splurge on high-class lifestyle. This high class living does not just include a fancy house or apartment, but also services like daily house cleaners and butlers.
Not only has Tuija differentiated itself from the American startup Airbnb, it also leads Chinese competitors with advancements like the first mobile app on the market, a strong internal system that targets system bugs and performance issues on the site, along with a user analytics command center that constantly identifies what the consumer wants.
According to OZY, Tujia raised $455 million in funding from big investment firms including GGV Capital and Lightspeed Venture Partners, as well as other travel titans such as HomeAway and Ctrip in China. It boasts tens of millions of users and 400,000 listings.
Tuija’s senior vice president Zhuang Hai calls Yang “driving force” of Tuija, “almost all technical decisions run through her.”
Read more about Yang and Tuija at OZY.