Side raises $150M at $1B valuation to help real estate agents go it alone – TechCrunch


Side, a real estate expertise firm that works to flip agents and unbiased brokerages into boutique manufacturers and companies, introduced Monday that it has raised $150 million in Series D funding.

Coatue Management led the spherical, which brings San Francisco-based Side’s valuation to $1 billion and whole funding raised to over $200 million since its 2017 inception. Existing backers Matrix Partners, Trinity Ventures and Sapphire Ventures additionally participated within the new financing.

The spherical is notable in that the quantity raised is considerably greater than the $35 million Side raised in a Series C spherical in November 2019. Valuation too elevated almost 7x in contrast to the $150 million valuation at the time of its Series C. Sapphire Ventures led that funding and managing director Paul Levine, who was beforehand president and COO of Trulia (via its IPO and multibillion-dollar acquisition by Zillow), joined the corporate’s board of administrators at that point.

The startup pulled in between $30 million and $50 million in income in 2020, and expects to double income this 12 months. In 2019, Side represented over $5 billion in annual dwelling gross sales throughout all of its companions. Today, the corporate’s group of agent companions represents over $15 billion in annual manufacturing volume.

Side was based by Guy Gal, Edward Wu and Hilary Saunders on the premise that the majority real estate agents are “underserved and underappreciated” by conventional brokerage fashions.

CEO Gal stated current brokerages are designed to assist “average” agents and as such, the top-producing agents find yourself having to do “all of the heavy lifting.”

Side’s white label mannequin works with agents and groups by solely advertising and marketing their boutique model, whereas additionally offering the required expertise and assist wanted on the again finish. The purpose is to help accomplice agents “predictably grow” their companies and enhance their productiveness.

“The way to think about Side is the way you think about what Shopify does for e-commerce…When partnering with Side, top-producing agents, teams and independent brokerages, for the first time in history, gain full ownership of their own brand and business without having to operate a brokerage,” Gal stated. “When you spend years solving the problems of this very specific community of agents, you are able to use software to drive enormous efficiency for them in a way that has never been done before.”

Existing brokerages, he argues, actively discourage agents from turning into prime producers and groups, as a result of agents who serve fewer shoppers could be pressured into paying a lot greater fee charges on each transaction, which implies the incentives between brokerages and prime agents and groups are misaligned.

“Top producers want to grow and differentiate, and brokerages want them to do less business at higher fees and be one more of the same under the same brand,” Gal stated. “Side, rather than discouraging and competing with top producing agents and teams, enables them to grow and scale their own business and brand.”

Today, Side helps greater than 1,500 accomplice agents throughout California, Texas and Florida.

The startup plans to spend its new capital on “significant hiring” and towards an enlargement outdoors of California, Texas and Florida — the three markets during which it presently operates. It additionally plans to enhance its 300-plus headcount by one other 200 workers. 

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