Savanna Sunrise - The Story

Pioneering Digital Hotel Marketing in Africa

Norwegian entrepreneurs Endre Opdal and Håvar Bauck incorporated Savanna Sunrise Ltd. in Dubai in 2014.


The concept of offering digital marketing solutions to hotels came as a result of the resounding success of their previous venture, Nairobi Airport Hotel, which, with five budget apartments in Syokimau, had become the highest-performing property on in Nairobi.  


From the initial success, the Founders saw the opportunity to build a business from the marketing concept of Nairobi Airport Hotel.  That vision gave birth to a pioneering revenue management

Five Budget Apartments Became Kenya's First "AirBnB"

The online revenue management concept turned out to be an even greater success, and from 2015 to 2015, the young company signed up 750 partner hotels across East Africa.


The bootstrapped startup had become a pioneer of digital marketing and e-commerce, and was experiencing extreme growth rates in a virgin market.

The founders were eyeing Nigeria and West Africa.  In 2017, after a much-publicized merger talks with Polish travel technology firm Hotel Online Sp. zo. o., the new group rebranded to HotelOnline, and shifted its focus from the East Africa region, to the whole continent.

From Savanna Sunrise to HotelOnline

In the continuation of what started under Savanna Sunrise, HotelOnline has remained a disruptive force in the digitization of African hotels.  The company became the first in Africa to successfully complete an equity crowdfunding in 2017, and became profitable in 2019.  HotelOnline survived the extreme hardship of the Covid-19 pandemic, and reemerged stronger than ever after raising an investment from Yanolja, a Korean traveltech giant and Softbank investee.



Are you a hotelier looking for ways to increase revenue?

Reach out to HotelOnline today. We are there for you!

The Founders

Håvar Bauck