NoBroker.com raises $10M series B funding, plans to expand to 20 citiesAparajita Choudhury
Bengaluru-based brokerage-free property search portal NoBroker.com has raised $10 million funding led by Singapore based venture capital firm BEENEXT and Digital Garage along with other investors namely BEENOS, Qualgro and Mamoru Taniya of Asuka holdings. Existing investor SAIF Partners has also participated in this round. The company had raised $3 million in February 2015 from SAIF Partners and Fulcrum Ventures in Series A fund.
This new round of funding will be utilized in:
- hiring people in product and technology
- marketing activities, and
- expanding to 20 cities in India in the next two years. Currently, the startup has 150 employees.
Founded in 2013 by IIT- Bombay alumnus Akhil Gupta and IIT- Kanpur and IIM- Ahmedabad alumnus Amit Kumar Agarwal, NoBroker.com is an online real estate firm offering brokerage-free buy or sell of properties. It's a P2P rental marketplace and claims to have more than 650,000 customers today. The company has three revenue models:
- Freemium model for tenants,
- Freedom plan for Rs. 999
- Relax plan for Rs.1999.
Amit Kumar Agarwal, CEO and Co-Founder, NoBroker.com said,
In last 12 months, our customer base has grown from 35,000 to 650,000. We have seen this growth despite us moving from a free to a subscription-based fee model. The current size of the non-brokerage market in India is $6.5 billion. We are trying to cover 70 per cent of the market and turn profitable by the next 18 months.
With presence in 4 major cities namely Mumbai, Bangalore, Pune and Chennai, NoBroker claims to help customers save more than 15 crores of brokerage every month. The market size of residential rental and resale brokerage alone in top 20 cities in India is a whopping $ 6.5 bn which is estimated to grow to $17 bn in next 5 years.
Real estate segment has proved to be a hard nut to crack when it comes to profitability and sustainable growth. After being valued at $300 million, Housing went though tough times when its senior management including the CEO quit. The company has grabbed another Rs 100 crore from its existing investor Softbank at a much lower valuation. CommonFloor was acquired by Quikr in Jan 2016 for an undisclosed amount. The acquisition was targeted at further strengthening the property listing arm Quikr Homes. Another major player, Grabhouse raised $10 million series B funding in October 2015. Though many more startups are entering the different subsets of real estate ecosystem, consolidation is taking place at relatively faster rate as compared to other sectors.