Student housing startup Stanza Living raises $10 million from Sequoia Capital
Stanza Living will use the funding to expand in to major student hubs in the country
New Delhi: Delhi-based student housing start-up Stanza Living has raised $10 million in a Series A round led by venture capital firm Sequoia Capital, co-founder Anindya Dutta said in an interview.
The start-up’s existing investors, Matrix Partners and Accel Partners, also participated in the round. Last November, it had secured seed money of $2 million from Matrix and Accel.
Founded in 2017 by Dutta and Sandeep Dalmia, Stanza Living is run and managed by Dtwelve Spaces Pvt. Ltd. At present, it offers housing accommodation to students across Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR).
The company plans to utilize the capital to launch its services in other cities, including Pune, Jaipur, Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Indore.
It is also looking strengthen its leadership team, ramp up hiring, build technology and expand its network of operations with the fresh capital.
“Student housing is an established asset class in the West and we believe Stanza, with its scalable business model and strong economics, can create the asset class in India,” said Ashish Agrawal, principal at Sequoia Capital India Advisors.
The start-up operates a full-stack hospitality model, controlling inventory, management and food services. It has 2,000 beds across 16 properties in Delhi-NCR.
It aims to expand to 10,000-20,000 beds within the next one year, said Dutta. The cost per student ranges from ₹7,000 to ₹25,000, depending on the specifications of the accommodation.
The student housing industry is pegged at $15 billion and is expected to grow three times in the next 10 years, according to industry experts. The segment is largely fragmented and unorganized.
Stanza Living competes with the likes of Zolo, CoHo, Ziffy Homes and Homigo, which cater to students as well as professionals.
Recently, Oyo had announced plans to enter the rental market for long home stays.
Stanza Living has collaborated with online eyewear firm Lenskart to provide free eye check-ups for hostel students. It has also partnered with home services start-up UrbanClap to provide wellness services, Zomato for food deliveries and ticketing platform BookMyShow.
“It is just not about an accommodation or a place to live. We want to provide services in terms of personal and professional well being, along with social engagement. We are also looking forward to financial tie-ups,” added Dutta.
The start-up is working towards forging partnerships with industry experts to provide career mentorship to students, and with professional companies for helping students learn basic professional skills and requirements like resume building and Microsoft Excel, said Sandeep Dalmia.
Stanza Living currently has an occupancy rate of 90% across all its accommodations. Dutta said the company will cross revenues of over ₹20 crore in FY19, which would be 10 times the revenue it earned in 2017-18 (₹2 crore).