House rental app Badi raises $30m for Tin­der-like of­fer­ing

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Technology Intelligence - By Matthew Field

NOT SO long ago, in­di­vid­u­als look­ing for ro­mance might have taken to the clas­si­fied pages of a news­pa­per, ap­pear­ing along­side ad­verts of land­lords look­ing for prospec­tive ten­ants.

But now, a start-up that mixes house­hunt­ing for ten­ants with the swipe left/ swipe right me­chan­ics of Tin­der has raised tens of mil­lions of pounds, led by a US ven­ture cap­i­tal­ist who backed Face­book, as it plans a ma­jor push for the Lon­don prop­erty mar­ket.

Badi, a start-up head­quar­tered in Barcelona, has raised $30m (£24m) from US back­ers to ex­pand its mix of dat­ing app and prop­erty search, the start-up’s founder told The Daily Tele­graph.

The start-up gained the new fund­ing from Good­wa­ter Cap­i­tal, a US in­vest­ment firm that re­cently led a bumper £71m round in UK chal­lenger bank Monzo. Good­wa­ter’s in­vest­ment was led by the in­vest­ment firm’s co-founder Chi-Hua Chien, who was be­hind an early in­vest­ment in Face­book in 2005 while at an­other ven­ture cap­i­tal firm.

While many land­lords or renters look­ing for a house­mate might nor­mally have to strug­gle with let­ting fees or deal with show­ing their house to dozens of strangers, Badi claims to stream­line the process.

Users are able to vet po­ten­tial room­mates, who re­veal de­tails in a pro­file, sim­i­lar to that of a dat­ing web­site, about what they are look­ing for in a flat and room­mate. Users then swipe “yes” or “no” to them, sim­i­lar to dat­ing apps such as Tin­der.

Badi chief ex­ec­u­tive Car­los Pierre said: “Badi makes that first con­nec­tion way more ef­fi­cient and faster.”

Af­ter the match­mak­ing process, users can then in­stant-mes­sage their po­ten­tial flat­mates to find out more about them.

Badi aims to take mar­ket share from ri­val ten­ant-hunt­ing web­sites, such as Spare­room, as well as ma­jor prop­erty web­sites such as Right­move.

“In ev­ery big mar­ket there are clas­sic room renter plat­forms,” Mr Pierre said, “the thing that we are of­fer­ing is the user ex­pe­ri­ence.”

The new fund­ing brings Badi’s to­tal raised to $45m. Other in­vestors in­cluded Tar­get Global, Spark Cap­i­tal and Man­grove Cap­i­tal.

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