Excl: Housing.com raises close to $18M led by Helion Venture Partners
Real estate portal Housing.com (earlier Housing.co.in) has raised approximately $18 million (around Rs 110 crore) in a fresh round led by Helion Venture Partners among other investors, sources familiar with the development told VCCircle.
This takes the total funding raised by the firm to date to around $20 million. The startup had raised $2.5 million in pre-Series A funding from Nexus Venture Partners in June last year.
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An email query sent to Advitiya Sharma, co-founder of Housing remained unanswered. Separate emails sent to Rahul Chandra of Helion Venture Partners and Sandeep Singhal from Nexus Venture Partners also did not elicit any response.
Sources informed that the funding will help the company expand to almost 40 cities from 12 cities at present.
Housing was set up in 2012 by a group from IIT Bombay. The startup 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.
Prior to that, it also attracted two rounds of angel funding. In March 2013, the company raised angel funding from former Network18 CEO Haresh Chawla, immediately after securing an undisclosed sum from a group of angel investors, led by Zishaan Hayath, co-founder of the phone commerce company Chaupaati Bazaar (acquired by Future Group).
Last September, the startup bought the Housing.com domain name as well as a national number 03-333-333-333, for $1 million. The purchase was done as a first step for the company's international expansion. Earlier, the company had appointed Richa Bansal, co-founder and managing director of online jewellery and fashion accessories retailer 21Diamonds.in, as its chief business officer.
Online property search market is highly competitive with various players including 99acres.com, IndianProperty.com, Makaan.com, Magicbricks.com, Housing.com, CommonFloor.com and Proptiger.com among others. Most of these firms have raised funding over the last couple of years.
At the same time the huge size of domestic real estate market has attracted new players and continues to see launch of new ventures. For instance, real estate advisory services firm Liases Foras is now looking to launch a property search portal.
Recently, Mumbai-based Cryptopy Technologies Pvt Ltd, the company behind the real estate portal Grabhouse.com, raised an undisclosed amount in seed funding from early-stage investment firm India Quotient and MV Krishnan, vice president (corporate treasury sales) at Deutsche Bank.
In December last year, Chennai-based India Property Online Pvt Ltd, which runs an online platform listing residential properties for buying & selling through IndiaProperty.com, raised $12 million from Bertelsmann India Investments and existing investors Canaan Partners and Mayfield Fund.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)