Short-term apartment rental start-up Ukio has raised €27 million in a funding round to expand its presence in Western Europe.
The Barcelona start-up targets flexible and remote workers with short-term apartment rentals in European cities.
The Series A round, made up of €17 million in equity and €10 million in debt, is led by Felix Capital with participation from Kreos Capital, Heartcore and Breega.
Founded by brothers Jeremy and Stanley Fourteau, Ukio lets its furnished, serviced apartments to flexible workers that are not tied down to one location – a trend that has emerged since the pandemic.
Many of its customers require places to stay for six months or less as part of their job so traditional, long-term lettings are impractical.
“We’re building proprietary software tools so it’s easier than ever for people to find the perfect home to stay in, as well as simplify their search and create the essential products and features to provide a high-end service to our guests,” Jeremy Forteau, previously of Headspace and Knotel, said.
Ukio currently has a portfolio of more than 500 apartments in several cities including Barcelona, Lisbon and Berlin and in the coming year plans to extend that reach to cities like London and Paris. It employs 120 people across its cities in Europe.
The new funds will also be used to further build out the start-up’s tech stack and the software behind the customer experience.
“We founded Ukio to be the go-to solution for a new generation of flexible workers. The rise in remote work is unshackling people from their desks, enabling them to experience more of the world, and they are using this opportunity to live and work wherever they want,” Stanley Forteau, a former head of global growth at Airbnb, said.
“Yet, the residential real estate market has stayed stuck in the past and is in no way conducive to the needs of tomorrow’s generation. We’re building the future at Ukio – a future where people can live freely, supported by technology, and without the typical pain points associated with the housing market.”