US: New Brunswick-based vacation rental management system Futurestay has announced it has raised $2.4 million in a venture round, led by BNM Ventures and New York Angels with participation from Newark Venture Partners and Harvard Business School Alumni Angels.
The latest investment takes the company’s total funding to date to $6.5 million.
A venture round is a type of funding round typically used for venture capital financing, where a startup company gains investment from venture capitalists and other institutional investors.
Futurestay, which was founded back in 2015, automates bookings, distribution, guest communications, payment distribution and pricing for independent vacation rental property managers in 120 countries around the world, principally in the Americas and Western Europe.
While bookings have dropped by around 85 per cent, founder and CEO, Philip Kennard, told Phocuswire that he was optimistic for a return in demand for short-term rental bookings but his company would need to adapt in the post-Covid-19 world.
He said: “While bookings are down 85 per cent, our volume of new property signups is nearly unchanged from pre-pandemic levels. They are down only eight per cent off their highest peak ever, which was in November.
“That tells us that the independent hosts – essentially entrepreneurs – are not giving up. They are finding solutions to help their business survive the pandemic,” he added.
Kennard says he now aims enhance Futurestay’s product by continuing to partner with suppliers booking platforms, having already secured partnerships with the likes of Airbnb, Booking.com and Vrbo.
He added that he was expecting revenue to recover to some extent by the first quarter of next year, and the firm has begun cutting costs on marketing and hirings to return to pre-coronavirus levels of business.