ROTTERDAM, 8th May 2018
HousingAnywhere.com, the global accommodation platform for international students, announced today that it secured 6 million Euro in capital in a Series B Financing Round. The investment round is led by the Swedish fund Vostok New Ventures, with participation from existing investors Real Web and henQ. The funding will be used towards product innovation, market expansion and to accelerate HousingAnywhere’s vision of staying the world's leading student accommodation platform for mid-term rentals.
Initially started as a Dutch student side project when Founder Niels van Deuren tried to sublet his student room in Rotterdam, the Netherlands when he was on exchange in Singapore, HousingAnywhere has grown to be present in more than 500 cities globally since 2015, making it the biggest student accommodation platform in the world with more than 5 million visitors a year. Over the last year, the Rotterdam-based marketplace used a 5 million Euro funding from early-stage VCs Real Web and henQ to grow its presence in Europe and the USA. To further accelerate this growth, HousingAnywhere will use the funding proceeds for product development, especially by easing the process of rent collection through a peer-to-peer payment service.
According to Djordy Seelmann, CEO of HousingAnywhere, this successful financing round proves that HousingAnywhere is on a promising growth path: "This investment is really exciting news for us. At HousingAnywhere we’re focussed on remaining the largest global platform for international students to book accommodation abroad. We will use the new investment to scale up, and we are taking major steps with the continued development of our booking platform. Now that we’ve ensured that tenants and landlords can easily connect and safely conclude a tenancy agreement online, we will simplify the collection and payment of rent by offering a peer-to-peer payment service before the end of this year. This is a big step forward, and we're developing payment technology with a lot of potential, which can ultimately be used more broadly in the real estate market."
Although HousingAnywhere continues to primarily focus on ensuring the rental market is more accessible for international students, the broader potential already appears from the organic growth of the platform. "The supply of rooms and apartments is becoming more diverse, and we’re seeing that HousingAnywhere is increasingly being adopted by other user groups looking for a mid-term rental accommodation abroad, such as expats and digital nomads," says Van Deuren. The focus of expansion of the platform is currently on Western-Europe. Outside Europe there are also interesting countries for the platform, “that opportunity we will capture soon too”.
The newest investor on board, Vostok New Ventures, has a history of backing marketplace unicorns such as Avito, BlaBlaCar and Gett. "In HousingAnywhere.com, we see a team that has proven itself, with a huge drive to scale up and become the dominant player in the online real estate market”, says Per Brilioth, Managing Director of Vostok New Ventures.
HousingAnywhere.com is the leading global accommodation marketplace for international students with over 50,000 active advertisements in more than 50 countries. On the peer-to-peer platform tenants can connect directly with landlords and book mid-term rentals. Over 160 partner universities recommend their students to use the HousingAnywhere platform. HousingAnywhere.com was founded in 2009 by Niels van Deuren when he was looking for temporary accommodation for his semester abroad in Singapore. In 2018, Head of Development Djordy Seelmann, took over as CEO.
Vostok New Ventures Ltd (Vostok New Ventures), formerly Vostok Nafta Investment Ltd, is an investment company with the business concept of using experience, expertise and a widespread network to identify and invest in assets with considerable potential for value appreciation, with a focus on companies with network effects. The Swedish Depository Receipts of Vostok New Ventures are listed on Nasdaq Stockholm’s list for mid cap companies with the ticker VNV SDB.
Real Web operates a number of leading online marketplaces in Europe through its controlled or participated entities, including – in the Real Estate vertical - Immobiliare.it in Italy, Spitogatos in Greece and in the Adriatic region and Immotop in Luxembourg; ProntoPro.it and StarOfService.com in the Professional Services marketplace in Italy and France; Uala.it, Bucmi.com and Funkmartini.gr in the Beauty segment in Italy, Spain/Portugal and Greece; Facile.it in the online insurance brokerage in Italy.
HENQ is a Venture Capital Firm based in the Netherlands. HENQ provides capital & professional support for early stage technology companies. HENQ targets young technology companies - with a product that is scalable and has started to generate revenues - led by ambitious and strong management teams, active in international growth markets such as ICT / New Media / Mobile / Software sectors. henQ’s companies stand out because of their huge growth potential, strong management teams, international ambitions and scalable products. Above all, they stand out because, like us, they have a mind and will of their own.