University Cribs, the online platform for student property rental, announces today the completion of their seed funding round.
Strategic investors from a range of related industries have committed capital to seeing the business further grow. With new capital, University Cribs plans to expand its geographic reach further with letting agents and student property providers across the UK, while investing in the technology platform to stay ahead of the market.
University Cribs was founded by university friends Jack Jenkins and Dan Jefferys, together with fellow entrepreneur Christian Samuel with whom they had previously worked on a student events and marketing venture.
Having launched last year, University Cribs saw rapid adoption during the 2016-17 academic year, listing over 120,000 rooms for rent from a mix of 300 customers comprising lettings agents and student housing providers.
The business expanded its geographic network in April to include properties in London, and now lists properties in 27 university towns across England and Wales.
Jack Jenkins, Co-founder of University Cribs, said: “Dan, Christian and I are thrilled to have the backing of established entrepreneurs and business leaders within relevant industries – ranging from UK property to student leisure. As the university term starts across the UK, we want to offer students the easiest and most hassle-free route to rental. Today’s investment allows us to push ahead with our plans, and make the most of the forthcoming academic year when over 2million students will be considering their accommodation options for the years ahead.”
With this new investment, the business is now valued over £2million. Though currently generating revenues as a property listing service, today’s seed funding enables further investment in the University Cribs technology platform, opening up new revenue streams to provide shared services to student households.
The angel investors involved in this seed round have included entrepreneurs with businesses in adjacent industries, demonstrating the value of the University Cribs platform to develop in new markets:
- From the property industry, Raffaelle Russo, Director of Loc8Me
- From the student leisure industry, Dave Harvey & Tom Paine, co-founders of TeamLove
- From the graduate recruitment industry, the co-founders of Thor Companies
Tom Paine, investor and co-founder of TeamLove said: “The student property market is ripe for disruption. University Cribs is bringing much-needed transparency to the market, and the three founders have taken a smart approach to thinking about what value-added services they can bring to the student market. They have built a nifty technology platform, and have built a trusted brand for the marketplace to allow them to offer more services in the future. I’m thrilled to be on board as an investor – it’s going to be an exciting journey from here.”
Chris Singleton, investor and co-founder of Thor Companies, said: “As three co-founders who started up a business several years ago, we encountered similar challenges and opportunities to the ones facing Christian, Jack and Dan. Having a solid management team will see them achieve great successes as they expand, innovate and grow University Cribs. We’ve invested in them as much as the business – they’ve engaged the student population in their brand and their product, and we see potential to support that loyal user base in a few years as they look beyond university towards full-time employment. The obvious synergies with our business, and others in the graduate market, make University Cribs a compelling investment.”