Housing.co.in hires 21Diamonds.com's Richa Bansal as chief business officer, eyes global markets

12 Sep, 2013

Richa Bansal, co-founder and managing director of online jewellery and fashion accessories retailer 21Diamonds.in, has joined Nexus Venture Partners-backed real estate portal Housing.co.in as chief business officer.

As part of her new role, Bansal will lead sales in the firm for both the broker as well as land verticals. "I am joining the core team. My first priority will be to launch new products and scale up operations," Bansal told Techcircle.in.

"We also plan to expand to other cities in India and as well as globally. We are debating which markets outside India can offer us the best opportunities. A number of countries are on our radar. Initially, we are looking to expand to an Asian country. I expect it to happen in 6-12 months," she said.

An MBA from Wharton School of Business (US), Bansal earlier worked with The Blackstone Group as summer associate. Prior to this, she was an investment analyst at Bessemer Venture Partners. Previously, she was a research analyst at Everest Group.

Housing was set up in 2012 by a group from IIT Bombay. It enables real estate brokers to upload unlimited listings on the site while users can search properties for free. The venture is owned and operated by Mumbai-based Locon Solutions Pvt Ltd and currently has 30 IIT graduates on board. The service is currently available in eight cities—Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Pune, Gurgaon, Chennai, Noida and Ghaziabad.

Last month, Housing added a land classified segment feature that will enable farmers and villagers to list and sell their land on its platform. "We are still working on this feature. I hope an official launch to happen in the next few weeks," Bansal said.

In June this year, the firm secured $2.5 million in pre-Series A funding from Nexus Venture Partners. It also received two rounds of angel funding from several investors, including Haresh Chawla, former Network18 CEO, and Zishaan Hayath, co-founder of the phone commerce company Chaupaati Bazaar, which was acquired by Kishore Biyani's Future Group a couple of years ago.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)