The coronavirus-led economic slowdown has a serious impact on businesses and startups. A lot of industries have taken some unfavorable measures such as laying off employees and cutting salaries due to the shutdowns. In view of the current situation, investors cautioned the Indian startups to "prepare for the worst" and cut down on spending.
At a time when raising investments is out of the equation, investors, VC firms have either put investment deals on hold or even called them off, the challenge for Indian startups is real. Startups like Bounce, MakeMyTrip, and others have cut the salaries of their employees. Amidst all this, Bengaluru-based startup is holding its hand out of the end of the tunnel into the light.
NoBroker defies scepticism
NoBroker, a startup that helps people on the lookout for a house - rent, lease or buy - by connecting them directly with property owners, has managed to raise $30 million from General Atlantic to close Series D round of funding at $80 million. This puts the startup's total investment at $151 million, TechCrunch reported.
NoBroker, which started out as a service to help people buy or rent houses, has forayed into various sectors, which now include services too. At NoBroker, customers can get end-to-end service of moving houses as it offers assistance with moving, painting, cleaning, rental agreements and loan disbursements.
We are expanding our footprint. With this additional $30 million, our idea is to go deeper into the existing cities where we are present and expand more on the NoBroker home services platform, where we allow packers and movers, painting, cleaning, rental agreements, and home loans. Also, we had launched a community management app called NoBrokerHOOD. More than 2,000 societies are using this app and we will be investing more in technology, product and sales side of it for better customer experience," Akhil Gupta, one of the co-founders, said in an interview with CNBC.
'Starting where left off'
The coronavirus crisis has impacted all the business sectors and NoBroker isn't immune. But Gupta is confident it will recover from the impact soon after the pandemic blows over.
Our industry has been put on hold. But once the lockdowns are lifted, we will start from where we have left. People will be needing houses, people will still be moving. One of the biggest advantages for NoBroker is that we are in six big cities in India and we just have a single office. We use technology to cater our customers and we continue to do that by adding new tools like uploading videos of houses, video calling between the buyers and sellers and adding groceries to our new NoBrokerHOOD and rent payment through credit cards," Gupta rightly pointed out.
NoBroker has 35 lakh registered properties across a dozen cities in India. The school reopening is a peak season for NoBroker as it witnesses a sharp spike in people moving to new areas and different cities. With the new investment capital and NoBroker's strategy, things appear to be looking good for the five-year-old startup.