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Kutcher invests in German start-up

$US1.2 million grabbed by Gidsy

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Ashton Kutcher has made an early stage investment in Berlin start-up Gidsy, a booking site specialising in "quirky" global experiences.

The venture was launched two months ago with city specific sites in New York, Amsterdam and Berlin and is poised to launch in London and San Francisco.

The $US1.2 million seed investment round was led by Sunstone Capital and is joined by Index Ventures, Werner Vogels, Peter Read and Ashton Kutcher.

The company says that the new capital will be used to fuel and escalate worldwide expansion. The new investors add Gidsy to a growing roster of successful web based start ups including Etsy, Airbnb, Dropbox and Layar.

Founded by Dutch brothers Edial and Floris Dekker and Austrian Philpp Wassibauer in May 2011, Gidsy allows users to host different activities on the platform and derive revenue from bookings. The site offers a variety of events ranging from photography workshops to yoga classes to walking tours. Gidsy hosts news of the activity and handles bookings and customer service taking a 10 percent fee.

"Just over a half a year ago, we came up with the idea of Gidsy. Today, seeing the success of our first organizers and the incredibly positive feedback we get from people attending activities is really amazing. We’re on the way to become the Lonely Planet 2.0 for a new generation of travelers and locals, everywhere,” said Floris Dekker, chief product officer and co-founder.

The new investors join Alexander Ljung and Eric Wahlforss from Soundcloud, Matt Stinchcomb from Etsy, Felix Petersen from Amen and 'investor of the year' Christophe Maire, who provided the company’s early financing. ®

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