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The Million Bucks Look of NoBroker, the startup unicorn of India

By Siddhart Agarwal
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The Million Bucks Look of NoBroker, the startup unicorn of India
property: NoBroker helped many save a fortune on brokerages. Can it be the  breakout success prop-tech needs? - The Economic Times

NoBroker, a real estate unicorn amid a favorable funding environment for Indian property start-ups which has already raised a record $1 billion in financing. A ‘unicorn’ is a privately held startup with a valuation of $1 billion and above.

Real estate renting and buying platform, NoBroker, on Tuesday said it has raised $210 million as a part of its Series E funding round led by General Atlantic, Tiger Global Management, and Moore Strategic Ventures.

NoBroker is a one-stop platform for all property-related requirements from renting, buying, home services, financial services and apartment society management. It was founded by Akhil Gupta, Amit Kumar Agarwal, and Saurabh Garg in 2014.

More than 75 lakh properties are already registered on the portal and more than 1.6 crore individuals have used NoBroker services.

The company does not charge any brokerage from either party but offers service packages ranging from Rs 999 to Rs 5,999 for other services.

“The latest round of funding will help us further build our technology prowess and further invest in our home services and financial services. We use machine learning and artificial intelligence to make the entire process hassle-free and transactions economical for the end-user”, Akhil Gupta, co-founder and chief technology and product officer at NoBroker, said in a statement.

The seven-year-old startup provides a tech-based brokerage-free real estate platform, which allows users to buy and sell as well as rent properties across six demanding cities - Bangalore, Mumbai, Pune, Chennai, Hyderabad, and Delhi-NCR.

The expansion plan shows the idea of a future presence across 50 more Indian cities over the next two years. It even plans to heavily raise its funding in technology and product function not only in numbers but also in manpower.

NoBroker also offers apartment management software, NoBrokerHood, for gated societies. It plans to scale its presence from 10,000 gated communities to 100,000.

Apart from apartment management, NoBroker provides several value-added services including home loans, packers and movers, essential home services, legal documentation, online rent payment etc. It also allows direct-to-consumer (D2C) brands to sell to residents in residential communities through its NoBrokerHood platform.

Indian start-ups raised a total of $10.9 billion in the capital during the third quarter across 347 deals, which is approximately a twofold rise compared with the same period last year, consultancy firm PwC India said in a report in October.

However, the property tech segment has historically been a tough market for Indian start-ups. When the same was shared with the team, they have a different perspective.

“The buy-sell market has started doing very well. We will be making a significant investment in that market over the next four to five years. The segment was pretty much stagnant for 6-7 years before covid-19 because of multiple reasons, whether it is demonetization, or other issues. But we think the next 4-5 years will be very positive for buying and selling points, for consumption as well as investment," said Saurabh Garg, co-founder, and chief business officer, NoBroker.

This shows the picture different to what the Indian real estate segment is depicting. The positive approach along with a future to uphill the property game is the one notion for NoBroker.

The company is now working with new-age insurance options to launch customized insurance products for homeowners on its platform. For residents, it is also planning to boost its presence in services like commerce. Its current partnership closes near to 40 financial institutions to provide instant funding facilities to its customer.

“NoBroker’s digital-first approach to efficiently solve renting, buying, maintenance and related needs for real-estate owners, tenants, buyers, residential societies and developers is paradigm-shifting. In the future, NoBroker’s product stack will also find relevance in several under-regulated developing markets around the world. We are excited to be part of NoBroker’s continued success,” Shantanu Rastogi, managing director, General Atlantic, said.

While General Atlantic is a US-based leading global growth equity firm providing capital and strategic support for growth companies.

Established in 1980, the multinational company, combines a collaborative global approach, sector-specific expertise, a long-term investment horizon and a deep understanding of growth drivers to partner with great entrepreneurs and management teams to build exceptional businesses worldwide.

Across its business verticals, NoBroker competes with Proptiger, 99Acres, and MagicBricks.