For some investors, buying properties and renting them out on short-term vacation rental sites like Airbnb has become a lucrative side business, albeit one that’s somewhat controversial.
But the looming threat of regulation on home rentals has apparently done little to dissuade some investors from investing in businesses that help Airbnb and other vacation rental property managers operate at scale.
Guesty, a platform that offers a wide range of tools for its users to list their properties on Airbnb and other online travel agencies, facilitates communications with prospective visitors, collects payments, and coordinates with staff to service properties.
According to SEC filings posted today, the startup closed $19.75 million in fresh funding in a likely Series B round. Guesty went through Y Combinator during the winter 2014 batch and raised a $3 million Series A round led by Buran Venture Capital. Including the round of funding revealed today in regulatory filings, the company has raised $24.25 million in venture funding to date. (Crunchbase News reached out to the company, but executives declined to comment citing an exclusivity clause with another publication.)
At least on the filing, there are no new board members listed. Non-executive directors listed include:
- Shahar Tzafrir, formerly a general partner at Magma Venture Partners, an Israeli firm which invested in Guesty’s Seed and Series A rounds. Tzafrir is now the founding partner of TLV Partners.
- Modi Rosen, a founding partner of Magma Venture Partners.
- Alexander Konoplyasty, managing partner at Buran Venture Capital, a Hungarian venture firm that led Guesty’s Series A round.
Other members listed on the filing include executives from the property management startup.
What initially started as a management platform for Airbnb rentals has evolved into a full-service offering. Guesty has inventory distribution partnerships with travel booking sites like Expedia, Booking.com, and Splendia, as well as other home-rental services like HomeAway, VRBO (which is owned by HomeAway), and FlipKey (which was acquired by TripAdvisor).
The company already has users around the world, and it will likely use some of this new capital to continue growing.
Illustration: Li-Anne Dias