There are a plethora of startups offering property-management and concierge services to make the lives of Airbnb hosts easier. They include Silicon Valley’s Pillow, and Europe’s Hostmaker. Then there is Bnbsitter, which operates an on-demand model.
Another company in the space, which I’m told is growing fast and claims to now be the largest, is London-based Airsorted. The startup says it manages 1,000 homes, a four-fold increase in the past six months.
To help fuel further growth — including expansion to Sydney, Australia — Airsorted is disclosing that it has raised £1.5 million in funding. Concentric led the round, with participation from 500 Startups, and Pi Labs.
Founded in early 2015, and a graduate of proptech focussed Pi Labs accelerator, the startup provides an array of services designed to remove most of the hassle experienced by Airbnb hosts and, ultimately, to help them make more money. This includes managing guests, price optimisation, marketing, cleaning, and laundry.
Asked how Airsorted fares against competitors, co-founder and CEO James Jenkins-Yates says that most of the startup’s new hosts are not “switching” from a competitor but are using an Airbnb property-management and concierge service for the first time.
“There are other hosting companies, but it’s a big fast-growing market,” he says. “Our focus has always been on host profitability because that is where the exciting stories come from. People use the additional income to fund incredible lives and live their dreams… we believe the best strategy is to move quickly, and focus on delivering a consistent high-quality experience for hosts and guests alike”.
To that end, Airsorted charges a percentage of income generated from the properties it manages on Airbnb, and Jenkins-Yates says that means the startup’s interests and those of its customers remain aligned.
“We do everything we can to increase the value of the listing — price optimisations and building processes to ensure guests enjoy the stay, etc. — so that our hosts earn as much as possible,” he says.
“People forget that while Airbnb itself may be based in California, most of their properties are actually in destination cities across Europe,” says 500 Startups’ Matt Lerner in a statement. “Expanding to 3 cities (London, Edinburgh, Dublin) in under two years was not easy. Airsorted have proven the potential of the market and should continue to expand their base of available properties quickly.”