Landfolk has raised a "seven figure" pre-seed funding round [Credit: Landfolk]

Landfolk closes “seven figure” pre-seed financing round

Denmark: Aarhus-based summer house platform Landfolk has announced that it has raised a “seven figure” pre-seed financing round to drive its international market expansion.

The funding round was led by Danish venture fund HEARTLAND, which has previously invested in successful European startups such as Zalando [Germany], Klarna [Sweden], and &Tradition [Denmark].

Founded only last year, Landfolk wants to become a go-to hospitality platform for curated summer houses and second homes, which encourages city dwellers to reconnect with nature following the pandemic, both as families and in groups.

Launched by a group of former Airbnb employees, the travel tech startup offers more than 300 summer houses in Denmark on its platform, which are carefully handpicked according to five specific criteria that each home must meet to list on the Landfolk platform.

As demand for holiday homes in rural locations has skyrocketed since the start of the pandemic, Landfolk is seeking to make the rental booking experience even more seamless for users, and has already seen a higher booking volume in 2022 than in the entirety of the previous year.

CEO, Christian Schwarz Lausten, who sold his booking site company Gaest to Airbnb in 2019, said: “Our goal is to create Northern Europe’s largest and most loved community for holiday homeowners and those looking for a unique vacation. Landfolk was created because we have a real passion for the Danish holiday home.

“Not only do we want to allow guests to have that unique cottage experience, we also want to redefine what it’s like to own a cottage. We are excited and proud that HEARTLAND will be part of that journey,” he added.

In addition, Landfolk wants to appeal to new generations of travellers where it sees the highest growth in bookings. According to the startup, 79 per cent of its homeowners are under the age of 50 and over 50 per cent have never rented their homes out before.

HEARTLAND CEO Lise Kaae said: “Landfolk is a breath of fresh air in an industry that doesn’t mind a little innovation. Landfolk offers a unique combination of handpicked premium supply that’s bookable with sophisticated technology, making the guest’s booking experience seamless.

“This is a highly experienced team that has been able to show early traction through their community approach. Landfolk is an exciting new player in the market and we are thrilled to be partnering with them,” she added.

Landfolk co-founder Anders Boelskifte Mogensen said: “Twelve months ago, Cathrine K. Reimann, Camilla Swartz, Lars Kloster Silkjær, Chris Kjær Sørensen, Jonas Grau, Christian Schwarz Lausten and I agreed to take a stab at revitalising the Danish market for holiday homes. The opportunity on paper was huge, but ideas are nothing; execution is everything.

“I am utterly impressed with what this group of extraordinary founders has accomplished within such a short time – but today, this shoutout goes out to the 30+ people Landfolk team who put in an enormous passion and commitment every day,” he added.

The company is aiming to list more than 1000 curated holiday homes by the end of the year, and expand into international markets such as Germany and Sweden.

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