Leading short-term let and Airbnb property manager GuestReady Group has passed $1 billion assets under management.
The PropTech start-up, which marked its third anniversary in August, operates in 14 cities across Europe, the Middle East and Asia.
GuestReady uses in-house developed software to allow homeowners and property investors to tap into the Airbnb trend by providing a full package of short-let management and hospitality services.
The company now has over 2,500 properties in its portfolio – the figure more than quadrupling in under 12 months.
It has booked 400,000 nights’ accommodation and managed properties for 2,600 hosts worldwide since its inception in 2016.
“It was my first-hand experience of being an Airbnb host that inspired me to set up a service that would simplify hosting to time-stretched hosts,” said CEO and co-founder Alexander Limpert.
“I started to look at how software can reduce spending time listing a property on multiple booking sites, managing check-ins and check-outs of guests, cleaning and maintaining a property, while upholding a five-star quality service for our hosts and guests.”
The property management system centralises and automates processes including the dispatching of service providers, payment schedules and guest communications.
On its debut in 2016 GuestReady launched in six cities – London, Paris, Amsterdam, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Hong Kong.
Limpert, 33, added: “I must admit, it was an ambitious plan and would not have been possible without a great team of experienced entrepreneurs behind me.
“We knew that if we wanted to make GuestReady a success, we needed to think big.
“In the beginning, it was just me and my girlfriend running and setting-up operations for GuestReady London.
“We put up all the listings, cleaned apartments, prepared the beds for guests, dealt with property maintenance, responded to guests queries and welcomed them at the property as they arrived.
“In 2016, after living and working for a year in Asia, I moved back to London to set up
GuestReady and we appointed country managers in Paris, Amsterdam, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Hong Kong.
“By deliberately opening operations in a few cities we were able to quickly test, learn, adapt and scale our market strategy.
“Not all our markets got traction though. Within a few months after our launch, we decided to exit Amsterdam and Singapore.
“We saw that the demand for our services in these cities was limited, so decided to focus our resources elsewhere.”
In June 2018, the company closed a $6 million Series A funding round co-led by Impulse VC, a Russian fund backed by Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich, and Dubai-based VentureSouq.
In the last year, the PropTech start-up enjoyed a rapid period of growth with an increase of demand from property investors, multi-family homeowners and senior hosts.
The latter demographic are using short-term lettings as an extra source of income to complement their pension, pay bills and travel.
GuestReady UK MD Steffan Maagefelt said: “It’s essential for landlords to maximise the income from their properties to keep yields healthy.
“Short-term lettings are helping property owners maintain a steady income while they wait for new longer-term tenants to move in.”
GuestReady’s team has grown globally from 70 to 150 in the past 11 months.
The company has also acquired three short-term and holiday letting firms – Oporto City Flats in Portugal, We Stay in Paris in France and European market leader BnbLord.
The growth has been recognised with a host of honours, including Best Service Provider at the Serviced Apartment Awards 2018 and being named in the Hot 25 Startups for 2019 by Phocuswire and Voyager HQ.