Kindred
Justine Palefsky and Tasneem Amina [Credit: Kindred]

Kindred confirms $15m Series A raise

US: Members-only home-swapping network Kindred has confirmed that it has raised $15 million in a Series A funding round.

STRz first reported on Kindred’s discreet raise in February, at the same time as the company announced the acquihire of intentional dating app Mango and its founder, Bryan Li, who joined the company as chief technology officer [CTO].

The round was led by New Enterprise Associates, with participation from existing investors Andreessen Horowitz, Caffeinated Capital, Bessemer Venture Partners, and Outset Capital. The company also welcomed several new individual investors such as Evan Moore [former Khosla investor], and Dylan Field [Figma CEO].

Kindred says that it allows members to unlock a “lifestyle rich with travel and human connection” by matching with trusted peers to stay in each other’s homes as guests, not renters.

The recent funding round showcases the potential of the give-to-get sharing economy to make travel a way of life. According to Kindred, its members have spent over 5,000 nights at one another’s homes, and both host and guest satisfaction scores are above nine out of 10.

Kindred will utilise the funding to expand across core cities in North America in major markets such as New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, San Francisco, Mexico City and more, and launch in several major European cities later this year. The company will also continue to invest in its mobile app, building out its matchmaking technology and helping members discover new home swap opportunities.

Vanessa Larco, partner at NEA and Kindred board member, said: “We believe that Kindred’s innovative home-swapping model holds the potential to revolutionise the travel industry, offering unparalleled value and community for travellers. We are thrilled to be part of Kindred’s journey and look forward to seeing the company’s growth and expansion with this newest round of funding.”

Founded in 2021 by Justine Palefsky and Tasneem Amina, Kindred has reported a tenfold increase in monthly trip bookings and claims that it has received 20,000 membership applications, largely from primary residences instead of investment homes, since launching its private beta last spring. This growth points to Kindred’s efforts to make hosting approachable, trustworthy and hassle-free for “real” people who are looking to share or swap their primary residences, versus those running short-term rental businesses.

Palefsky said: “We’ve proven that there is significant appetite for a new approach to travel centred on peer-to-peer sharing, where every guest is also a host. Swapping with each other allows Kindred members to travel freely around the world with all the comforts of home.

“What we’ve seen over the past year is that when travel is both a better and more affordable experience, we start to fundamentally change what’s possible in people’s lives. We’re excited to use this funding to continue to grow our network while maintaining a strong experience for our members,” she added.

Elsewhere in the home exchange segment, Holiday Swap Group has secured $15 million in fresh funding to reach a $400 million valuation, while French home exchange platformHomeExchange has acquired British competitor Love Home Swap and home-sharing network My weekend for you in Southeastern France.

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