Berlin-based long-term rental startup nestpick follows up November’s Series A investment of $11 million with additional $2 million from Target Global and b-to-v Partners to significantly improve customer experience in 2016. This investment helps conclude a landmark year for the long-term rental startup after successfully expanding to 35 cities across eight European countries and Australia.
Customer experience is really big issue in the business of online rental. nestpick recently stated: “This market has become rife for scammers!”. The startup did a survey earlier this year to find out the real situation. It was conducted by asking over 500 people of all age groups from all over the world 14 comprehensive questions regarding their experiences with online rental scams. Most respondents fall into the Generation Y category with 55.8% aged between 22 and 25 and 28% aged between 18 and 21. Around a third of participants responded that they either know someone who has been scammed (31.3%) or have themselves been victims of online rental fraud in the past (22.8%). The issue is no rarity and has become a reality of renting online, with almost three quarters of the participants (73.8%) responding they are concerned that they will become victims when looking for their next home.
Venture Village doubted earlier this year whether so fast growing platform can really verify all nests as it promises in their statements. In this case, verification means a nestpick photographer visits the apartment, takes pictures and ensures its existence and quality. Nestpick started in April 2014 in the Netherlands and was acquired by the company builder Rocket Internet in December the same year. The startup then moved to Berlin, launching in cities in the U.K., France, Italy, Spain, Germany, Ireland, and Austria.
“The startup faces a dilemma, typical for marketplaces of that kind: What is more important – a great number of potential tenants or listed apartments? Like in most cases, Nestpick decided to focus on a large number of offers first. Despite growing fast, it should be important to startups to keep the promises they make,” wrote Felicitas Hackmann in her article for Venture Village.
So nestpick decided to be really serious about it. The company has hired longtime Airbnb customer experience specialist Luciana Eletti as the new Head of Customer Experience. Eletti developed effective customer experience teams at Airbnb for three years and drove positive service levels for guests. She explains that “finding a new home is still such a frustrating experience even though we find that people are spending up to half their income on rent. nestpick is showing that it doesn’t have to be this way. In my mind, trust and security are a given. It’s the prospect of going further to surprise and delight our customers that’s really exciting.”
For landlords, the Full Nest Guarantee insurance policy promises to cover the cost of rent of an upcoming vacant period if nestpick is unable to find a suitable tenant for their verified “nest”. For tenants the Nest Assured insurance policy offers to house them for up to 30 days if the verified “nest” that they have booked online does not match the description, or they cannot access the nest. These improved policies form the foundation of nestpick’s customer care and both sets of users will experience greater attention to their needs.
“Customer trust is paramount to everything that we do. All of our users will know that nestpick has their back. We are strengthening our insurance policies, introducing reviews and offering far more comprehensive and personal care for both our landlords and tenants. We will know we succeeded when our customers only have 10/10 things to say about us” says Fabian Dudek, founder and CEO.
nestpick offers a simple, secure and convenient way to find and rent accommodation for mid- and long-term stays. Completely online. With a transparent platform nestpick sets a new standard for the real estate market enabling tenants to rent without the need for in-person viewings. Backed by Rocket Internet in 2014, the platform is present in over thirty cities across 8 European countries and Australia, with more than 20,000 nests. The startup, founded by Fabian Dudek and supported in its global expansion by Dr. Patricia Moubarak, was awarded two prizes for entrepreneurial effort in the Netherlands, the LOEY and STUOP.
Eugene Levin, who is representing the recent investor Target Global, stated: “nestpick cut out the middleman and provides more value for the money for both landlords and tenants. At the same time, they’ve built a trustworthy brand with a world class customer experience. This is the first time one can safely rent a long term home online without viewings. 5 years ago this was unthinkable. nestpick changes the way people rent homes and that’s why we are so excited to be a part of it,”.