Housing.co.in closes a bridge round of funding over dinner, from Haresh Chawla, Ex-CEO Network 18
No. The headline is not a prank. In what would be a dream for most entrepreneurs in the Indian startup ecosystem, Housing.co.in raised a second round of funding in less than a month of its previous investment. Over a dinner meeting with former Network 18 CEO, Mr. Haresh Chawla, the team closed on the funding deal. Mr Haresh is currently a managing partner at India Value Fund Advisors (IVFA).
We caught up with Advitiya Sharma, Co-Founder Housing.co.in, to know more -
Advitiya shared that at the time of the meeting, they weren't looking for funding. He said, "Having just raised our first round some time back, we weren't looking to raise money this early. But Haresh ji expressed his interest in our product and was really impressed with the team. He liked the speed at which we execute and by the end of the dinner, we had closed on our second round of funding."
While Advitiya didn't reveal the value of the investment, he did share that the investment was many orders of magnitude larger than the previous investment. "You could call it a decent seed round," he said.
Advitiya further shared that the investment has done the team's confidence a great deal of good. He says, "the manner with which the investment happened and moreso, the person who's behind the investment has really got everyone in the team pumped up. Haresh Ji has done quite a lot through his career and we're really excited about the prospect of working with him."
New features and expansion plans
Housing.co.in currently carters for renting property. Advitiya shared that the portal will now also feature a buy and sell option. He says, "We are primarily focusing on Rentals, but have received a plethora of requests from consumers and brokers and so we decided to launch it."
While announcing their previous round of funding, Advitiya had already expressed intentions of expanding Housing.co.in's service to other cities. They went about deciding the next city where they'd launch in a very clever way. Advitiya said, "We ran a Facebook poll, asking where our users would like to have our services next. We were overwhelmed with the response. Over 40000 people voted and Hyderabad emerged as a clear winner with a whopping 17000 votes. It's great that our users are telling us where to go next and we're really loving it."
After Hyderabad, Advitiya shared that they will also be launching in Bangalore, which again was decided based on the results of poll.
We also got in touch with investor Haresh Chawla, who has invested in Housing.co.in on his own capacity. To him, Housing.co.in's world class product and team were the main drivers behind this quick decision to invest. He said, "This is a startup team which executes at a phenomenal speed. This is a young and smart team working on a product, that is really solving the users problem. This isn't just some listing of properties. The kind of features that it has is comparable to any international product in the same category, let alone Indian."
Haresh believes that the key to Housing.co.in's success lies in penetrating more markets, and has expressed great faith and confidence in the team's ability to execute this.
Looking for accommodation in Mumbai? Try Housing.co.in