Locale raises $11m in Series A funding round

US: Austin-based upscale aparthotel brand Locale has announced that it has raised $11 million in Series A funding.

The round was headed up by Amplo, with participation from Susa Ventures and Metropolis Capital Partners. The latest round brings the firm’s total funding to date to $14 million.

Locale, founded in 2016, aims to convert apartments into high-quality accommodations for business, leisure and extended stay travellers and deliver a “best-in-class guest experience” while operating both efficiently and effectively.

Its major markets are spread across the United States, such as Austin, Houston, Dallas, San Francisco, Nashville and Minneapolis, and it currently employs over 30 full-time team members. Despite limited capital investment to date, the company says its revenue has grown by up to 200 per cent year-over-year, while guest satisfaction scores remain solid.

The funding injection will go towards investing further in digital product innovation, enhanced in-room offerings and executive-level recruitment. At the same time, it will also enable Locale to advance with its  project pipeline in markets such as Denver, Nashville and Charleston, in order to provide guests with a fully branded and curated end-to-end experience that matches up to the largest and most successful existing aparthotel brands.

Amplo founder and CEO, Sheel Tyle, said: “We first decided to back Locale when we realised how thoughtful they are in building the next generation of accommodations for travellers.

“We are now increasing our commitment to Locale as it continues to redefine the short-term rental category by introducing a premium apartment hotel brand centred around quality in-room products, intentional design, local curation and most importantly, a superior hospitality-driven experience,” added Tyle.

Other participating investors in the funding round included Malkin Holdings, led by Anthony E. Malkin, chairman and CEO of Empire State Realty Trust, Rogue Insight Capital, and Chris Heller, the current chief real estate officer at OJO Labs, and former CEO of Keller Williams and mellohome.

Locale founder and CEO, Nitesh Gandhi, has built up an upscale aparthotel collection that aims to enhance every element of the guest experience by integrating specially-curated products, amenities, design and service. It caters particularly to families, millennial business travellers and larger groups.

Its business model helps to facilitate faster lease-ups, less vacancy, shared services and operations, and improved resident perks, allowing the company to enabled the company to partner with multifamily players such as Greystar, The Dinerstein Companies and AMLI.

In a press release, Gandhi said: “This year has been an exciting one of expansion for Locale—from the number of cities which we are located to the number of guests we’ve served.

“It’s been an important stepping stone in achieving our ambition to create the leading modern apartment hotel brand.

“This latest round of funding, together with our invaluable real estate and brand partnerships, will help Locale’s continued growth, which include a number of full-building deals currently in development that will allow travellers to experience Locale’s artfully curated approach to hospitality in a complete environment,” he added.

The firm previously secured $2.5 million in seed round funding last April, in a round also led by Amplo and Susa Ventures.

For more information about Locale, visit the website here.