26. Rebecca Kelly, CEO and founder at VenueScanner

Name: Rebecca Kelly

Position: CEO and founder

Company: VenueScanner

Website: https://www.venuescanner.com/




About Rebecca Kelly and VenueScanner


Rebecca Kelly, one of the UK’s leading female tech entrepreneurs, is founder and CEO of the UK’s largest online venue booking platform, VenueScanner.

With venues ranging from schools, community centres and office meeting rooms to pubs, churches and coffee shops, VenueScanner is revolutionising the way people and companies find, book and use venue space.

A platform accessible anytime, anywhere, VenueScanner is used by some of the world’s biggest brands including Facebook, Accenture and Unilever and has ambitions to become the go-to platform for event and venue hire globally.

Rebecca was motivated to become an entrepreneur because:

  • She wanted to genuinely create something that had a big impact
  • She struggled with dyslexia through school and university and believed entrepreneurship was the right path for her
  • She is passionate about building and creating, about challenging and making something better based on real-time learnings
  • She gets huge personal value out of building and leading a team to be the best they can be
  • She enjoys challenges and identifying opportunities for change

Rebecca was inspired to start VenueScanner because:

  • She knew there was a big industry challenge to solve – with the right technology, Rebecca knew she could make venue hire more accessible, provide more choice, streamline the booking process and give smaller, more independent spaces a platform to better compete
  • She wanted to help smaller, independent venue owners access the same customers as the big hotel chains with big budgets
  • She wanted to build and nurture a high-performing team, creating a place people love to work in the process

Rebecca’s biggest challenges have been:

  • Hiring and building a high performing and happy team – ensuring you hire the right people, at the right time and then have a retention plan in place to keep them is always a challenge, but it’s the one Rebecca relishes the most
  • Building the business back up from scratch after facing near collapse when Covid-19 hit
  • Fundraising is always tough – it takes a lot of grit, determination and a lot of resilience but it’s all worth it when you find the right funding partner
  • Managing her own work/life balance

Since founding VenueScanner in 2016, Rebecca has:

  • Increased headcount from 2 to 27
  • Raised £3 million in funding from investors including Tom Singh, founder of New Look, Greg Marsh, founder of One Fine Stay and Phil Burkes, founder of Big Yellow Storage, Angel Co-Fund
  • Launched in 10 cities across the UK
  • Increased revenue by 573% year on year
  • Increase subscription revenue by 2225% in the last year
  • Signed up over 25,000 venues making Venuescanner the largest network of event venues worldwide
  • Signed up over 200 FTSE companies as users
  • Reached 1.5 million users worldwide

But Rebecca is not stopping there. She has ambitious growth plans for the business and over the next 5 years, plans to:

  • Drive VenueScanner’s year-on-year growth rate to 300%
  • Increase revenue to £100m in the next 3 years
  • Sign up 10 million new customers
  • Sign up 100,000 new venues
  • Launch in 100 global cities
  • Increase headcount by 300%
  • Raise institutional funding
  • Build VenueScanner into the world’s biggest and best online venue booking platform




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