Wellbeing website Wahanda launches with backing of internet pioneers

LONDON - The co-founder of Lastminute.com Brent Hoberman and former executives from Yahoo! Search and Skype have invested in Wahanda.com, an online start-up for people searching for spa and wellbeing treatments.

Wahanda.com's founders believe the wellness sector is seriously under-represented online and needs a high-profile site where businesses, professionals and consumers can meet and interact online.

The company's management team includes chief executive Lopo Champalimaud, previously managing director of European lifestyle at Lastminute.com; chief operating officer Salim Mitha, previously senior European director at Yahoo! Search and Social Search; and director of technology Julian North, previously lead enterprise architect for Lastminute.com and Travelocity.

Investors in the project include: Brent Hoberman, co-founder of Lastminute.com; Stefan Glaenzer, former executive chairman of Last.fm; and Ambient Sound Investments -- the fund created by former engineers from Skype.

Hoberman said: "Wahanda's highly enthusiastic, knowledgeable and skilled team is helping to create a leading destination site where customers can search for spas and wellness businesses, discover the latest treatments, or find the ultimate wellness gift."

Champalimaud said: "With more spas, salons, treatments and practitioners listed than on any other site, Wahanda provides an exciting and unique way for wellness businesses and professionals to reach consumers.

"Its honest and user-friendly approach will allow visitors to search by criteria such as location, treatment or price when looking to make a booking or buy a gift voucher.

"Wahanda does not own spas and does not manufacture cosmetics; it's simply a site that brings together people who are passionate about wellness, want to find the best deals or just learn more."

Wahanda.com is already live and becomes transactional in September.