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Merging Airbnb and the traditional hotel model, Mexico City’s Casai raises $23 million to grow in Latin America – TechCrunch

With journey and tourism rising throughout Latin America, Casai, a startup combining Airbnb single unit leases with lodge room facilities, has raised $23 million to broaden its enterprise throughout Latin America.

The corporate, which initially was as hit arduous by regional responses to the COVID-19 pandemic as different companies within the hospitality business has recovered to succeed in almost 90 % of whole capability on the 200 models it manages round Mexico Metropolis.

The corporate was co-founded by chief govt Nico Barawid, a former head of worldwide growth at Nova Credit score and advisor with BCG, and chief working officer María del Carmen Herrerías Salazar, who beforehand labored at certainly one of Mexico’s largest lodge operators, Grupo Presidente.

The 2 met two years in the past at a barbecue in Mexico Metropolis and started talking about methods to replace the hospitality business taking one of the best of Airbnb’s brief time period rental mannequin of particular person models and pairing it with the standard management and requirements that company anticipate from a lodge chain.

“I wished to outline a product from a client angle,” stated Barawid. “I wished this to exist.”

Earlier than the SARS-Cov-2 outbreak Casai’s models had been primarily booked via journey companions like HotelTonight or Expedia. Now the corporate has a direct brisk direct reserving enterprise due to the work of its chief expertise officer, a former engineer at Google named Andres Martinez.

The corporate’s new financing was led by Andreessen Horowitz and included extra commitments from the agency’s Cultural Management Fund, Kaszek Ventures, Monashees Capital, World Founders Capital, Liquid 2 Ventures, and particular person traders together with the founders of Nova Credit score, Loft, Kavak and Runa.

Casai additionally managed to nab a debt facility of as much as $25 million from TriplePoint Capital, bringing its whole money haul to $48 million in fairness and debt.

Picture Credit score: Casai

The large spherical is partially due to the corporate’s compelling worth proposition, which provides visitor not solely locations to remain outfitted with a proprietary sensible {hardware} hub and the Casai app, but additionally a Google Dwelling, sensible lights, and Chromecast-kitted televisions, but additionally a lounge the place company can keep forward of their check-in or after check-out.

And whereas the corporate’s imaginative and prescient is targeted on Latin America now, its administration group positively sees the chance to create a world model and enterprise.

The founding group additionally features a chief income officer, Alberto Ramos, who labored at McKinsey and a chief development officer, Daniel Hermann, who beforehand labored on the journey and way of life firm, Selina. The top of design, Alexa Backal, used to work at GAIA Design, and its vice chairman of expertise, Cristina Crespo, previously ran WeWork’s worldwide design studio.

“To efficiently execute on this chance, a group must carry collectively experience from client expertise, design, hospitality, actual property and monetary companies to develop world-class operations wanted to ship on a first-class expertise,” stated Angela Unusual, a common associate at Andreessen Horowitz, who’s taking a seat on the Casai board. “It was apparent once I met Nico and Maricarmen that they’re operationally laser-focused and have uniquely blended experience throughout verticals, with distinctive views on the buyer expertise.”

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Jonathan Shieber