Tubber's Expedition To Global Waters Fueled By Investment From The NOM

Tubber, the fast-growing boat booking platform from Groningen, is set for international expansion, buoyed by a significant investment of 1 million euros from the Northern Development Agency (NOM). This move marks a critical moment in Tubber's journey, transcending Dutch borders and venturing into the global market.

Tubber's Voyage

Founded by Anne de Vries, and currently led by CEO Tessa van der Valk, Tubber has carved out a niche in connecting individuals with professional boat rental services.  "It is our ultimate goal to make a sailing holiday on the blue water accessible to everyone" - says Anne de Vries

The platform started in 2017 and has been a hit for its hassle-free sailing experiences in locations like Croatia and Greece. With a fleet that spans over 16,000 boats across more than 750 global destinations, Tubber's focus has been primarily on the Mediterranean region. 

The COVID-19 pandemic, while initially a setback, turned into an opportunity for Tubber to refine and automate its processes more intelligently, enhancing the platform's scalability. The company's resilience and proactive strategy attracted investments in early 2023 from G-Force Capital and Move Fast Ventures, along with angel investor Marnix van der Ploeg, a key figure in Booking.com's international success. 

Setting Sail for International Expansion

Despite Tubber's stronghold as a market leader in the Netherlands, the company's sights are set on international markets. The NOM's recent investment is a game-changer for Tubber. It is not just a financial boost but a testament to the confidence in Tubber's business model and its potential for scale. 

We hope that our investment will help them cross the borders quicker and more effectively. Our goal is for Tubber to become the next high growth scale-up in the Northern region, something we see happening here more and more frequently.

Boudewijn HulstInvestment Manager at the NOM

Navigating the Investment Course

During the fundraising process, Tubber faced challenges, especially amidst the uncertainties brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic. Defining a new normal for financial planning proved challenging, given the fluctuations in travel behavior from 2020 to 2022. 

Creating a budget was complicated by fluctuations in travel behavior, from a Covid year in 2020 to recovery in 2021 and overwhelming demand for vacations in 2022. Finding the new normal was crucial for solid financial planning, and this process took more time than initially expected.

Tessa van der ValkCEO of Tubber

Additionally, Tessa further emphasized the staffing difficulties at Tubber. Given the company's ambitious goals, there is a constant need for qualified professionals.

Yet, it was the team that made the difference among other factors that influenced the investment decision, as shared by Boudewijn: "Most important to us, of course, is the team behind Tubber. They are ambitious and innovative and have shown themselves to be extremely adaptable. They also surround themselves with great employees, advisors, and investors, which provide them with additional value."

Want to join Tubber team, check out the current vacancies HERE

The Next Destination

The team plans to provide unforgettable vacations for Scandinavian sailors soon after their successful launch this year in the United Kingdom and the recent penetration into the German market. With this investment from the NOM, Tubber will work on (primarily online) marketing, technological improvements on the platform, expanding the offering of available boats, and strengthening its presence in new international markets. Tessa expressed: "Our goal is to make sailing vacations on the open water accessible to everyone and become the go-to platform for sailing holidays. The 1-million-euro investment from NOM enables us to accelerate our expansion abroad and realize our international growth ambition."


Tubber's story is an example of how a regional startup can make a global impact with the right mix of passion, innovation, and strategic financial backing. This investment not only propels Tubber into new geographical territories but also reaffirms the strength and potential of the Groningen startup ecosystem.

Want to learn more about Tubber? Check out their website HERE.

Images from the NOM and Tubber.