Sydney-based Airbnb property management services company Hometime has landed a $6 million debt and equity funding deal with Australian technology venture capital firm OneVentures.
It’s the first deal from the new $100 million OneVentures Fund, launched less than 12 months ago. The fund is a partnership between OneVentures and Viola, the technology-focused Israeli venture credit fund.
It’s also one of the first major venture debt deals to land in Australia. While common in the US and Europe, venture debt is new to the local startup market.
Hometime co-founder William Crock, who launched the business with Dave Thompson in 2016 with the promise that it lets hosts “put their Airbnb properties on autopilot”, said the cash injection will fund continued expansion in Australia and New Zealand, following 2018’s 450 per cent growth, and debt was the right option for the duo.
“We believe that venture debt is an appropriate structure for a company such as ours, that is generating substantial revenue but needs additional working and acquisition capital in order to execute our aggressive growth plans,” Crock said.
“The additional capital will be used to drive market expansion both domestically and internationally, and will power further development of our host platform, which enable us to deliver an exceptional local and personalised hosting experiences on a global scale.”
The 1V Venture Credit Fund is targeting high-growth companies in the SaaS, fintech, marketplace and e-commerce fields, generating >$3-5m in revenue.
OneVentures managing partner Dr Michelle Deaker said the VC firm was pleased the fund’s inaugural investment went into Hometime.
“Dave and William have built an impressive high-growth and customer-focused business that is a strong use case for venture debt where the funds will be used for sales and market expansion,” Dr Deaer said. “We anticipate a strong partnership with Hometime, to assist them in their growth into new Australasian markets, and beyond.”
Hometime’s Airbnb management services are currently available in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Byron Bay, Sunshine Coast, Adelaide, and Auckland. The startup is aiming for a larger Series A round in early 2020.