Spotahome, a company that provides listings for rental listings, has raised $40 million in a new round of funding led by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. London-based Passion Capital and Madrid-based Seaya Ventures also participated in the round, which brings Spotahome’s total funding to just shy of $64 million.
Bloomberg said the company rivals AirBnb by letting people rent homes in the same way they would book a hotel room. Spotahome also provides extensive floor plans, photographs and videos of the homes it lists to help customers with their decisions. For landlords, it provides special software for managing multiple properties.
"Real estate was one of the first industries that came online," said Mood Rowghani, a Kleiner Perkins general partner, "but it has been slow to innovate."
Rowghani told Bloomberg that the main competition in rental listings aside from Airbnb is simple text-based sites such as Craiglist, or individual real estate agent’s websites that don’t offer the same kind of software as Spotahome.
Rowghani also said the rental market in Europe, where Spotahome is based, is worth some $500 billion a year as around a third of people there lease their homes at least some of the time.
Spotahome cofounder and chief executive officer Alejandro Artacho said the company plans to use the new funds to accelerate expansion and hire new executives in areas such as product development and marketing. The company will also look at merger and acquisition opportunities, he said.
Spotahome, which currently lists around 50,000 rental properties in 33 European cities including Barcelona, Berlin, London and Rome, makes money by taking a cut from the total contract value. Its average fee is less than 9 percent, Artacho said.
The company currently has 300 employees, plus an additional 120 home checkers who work for the firm on a freelance basis to vet properties and create videos.