How Homigo is Changing the House Rental Landscape
Homigo had closed its angel round of $200,000 in August 2015 and have investors like: Anuj Srivastava (CEO-Livspace) & Rahul Agrawal (CEO-Mebelkart) and some more angel investors. The startup is also in talks with various VCs/investors for its next round.
Photo Credit : Homigo's Founders,
Homigo is a branded chain of long-term accommodations based out of Bangalore. It aspires to be the ultimate destination for anybody who is looking for a seamless house renting experience. The startup was founded in August 2015 by 3 IIT Kanpur graduates - Nikunj Batheja (CEO), Aakash Verma (CTO) and Jatin Mitruka (COO).
SUJATA SANGWAN INTERACTS WITH JATIN MITRUKA, HOMIGO’S COO AND SPOKE TO HIM
What is the story behind the name Homigo?
[Jatin] - Our name originates from Home and Amigos (Spanish for friends). We are creating an ecosystem where our tenants make new friends while they stay in a comfy Homigo house. Hence, we call them Homigos.
How did the entrepreneurial bug bite you?
[Jatin] - When I moved to Bangalore in July 2014, I had no idea about real estate scene here and how to rent out a place, and other legalities. Slowly, when we starting hunting for a house online/offline; that was the time we experienced the hurdles we had to cross before actually getting a place that fits our expectations. Firstly, even the online listing companies are full of brokers and even if you find a house online you will have to cross paths with various sly brokers who will try to fool you and waste your time in every way possible. The 1-month brokerage charge and a 10-month rent as security deposit were the major financial burdens for us as we were just out of college. This is just too much of a headache when you are not even sure of duration of your stay in the city.
How are you different from the existing ones?
[Jatin] - We are not just a listing platform. We bring in predictability and standardization into the whole system. We control the overall experience as we keep owners and tenants separate. They never interact and that is where the experience becomes uniform.
We have brought the whole renting process online and anyone can book a house through our website seamlessly. Using technology along the lines of data analytics, tenant profiling and management, we plan to bring in something new and long awaited in the shared renting industry.
Funding status and monetization model
[Jatin] - We had closed our angel round of $200,000 in August 2015 and have investors like: Anuj Srivastava (CEO-Livspace) & Rahul Agrawal (CEO-Mebelkart) and some more angel investors.
We have a managed marketplace model where we are creating an opportunity where owners have the power to decide their house rental on a per bed basis and through this they can earn around 50% more rental income as compared to the market rent. We ask the owners to get the house furnished and we are helping them in the process by offering them the furniture though our partners as discounted pricing (the cost is recovered in 4-5 months through rental income). So, at the end they have good quality furniture at a lower price and are also earning more rental income through us. We take our cut on every rental transaction.
The best and worst memories while setting up
[Jatin] - I wouldn’t say any memory to be the worst one as we are always on a learning curve. Experiences that look bad at the time they are happening most end up as good learning memories.
Best memory is the launch of first homigo house and it getting filled up in less than 24 hours!
What is the market size and market opportunity?
[Jatin] - Total house rental market across Indian metros is close to $20 Billion and is ever increasing.
What are the traction details?
[Jatin] - Currently we are at:
Tenants: close to 400 (Beds signed up: Approx. 500)
Team Size: 16
Our model is helping us to expand quickly and in also maintaining a good operational profitability. We are in talks with various VCs/investors for our next round.
What advice you want to give the new entrants in this space?
[Jatin] - This space is already getting crowded and would not recommend entering at this point of time :)
Any interesting quote about your venture?
[Jatin] - As you can see on our website we always say: “Don’t just stay. Live.”
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