Contxto – Puerto Rican startups are gaining momentum in the Latin American startup ecosystem. Simply take a look at our coverage about Instarz developing a self-sustainable lunar settlement, BUREA helping customers earn cashback rewards or Guilty revolutionizing fashion with technology.
Without any further ado, the latest Boricua company making progress is Sojourn, the newest addition to Redwood Ventures’ portfolio. Undisclosed capital from the VC fund will reportedly go towards expanding its hospitality and proptech services throughout Latin America.
Functioning as the largest VC fund in Western Mexico, Redwood invested in multinational collaborative business managing more than 200 short-term rentals (STR) in Puerto Rico, Mexico, the United States, as well as Colombia.
What really caught investors’ attention was Sojourn’s mission to revolutionize the STR market. Flexible arrangements and positive Return of Investment (ROI) for partners just touch the tip of the iceberg.
“It’s a fact that the collaborative economy has come to transform the way in which we consume services every day,” said Ian Paul Otero, Managing Partner at Redwood Ventures, in a recent press release. “Those business models are here to stay and continue transforming our daily lives.”
While not offering hotel accommodations, these properties guarantee the same quality and service with its proptech solution. Similar to Airbnb but more inclusive. Moreover, everything is easily obtainable through Sojourn’s technological platform, optimizing operations and profits in the process.
Founded by Ryan Anderson and Daniel Zammata, who both bring an accumulative 30 years of hospitality as well as real estate experience to the table, Sojourn has a distinctive business model.
That’s to say, its “Master Lease” arrangement allows homeowners to increase the value of their STRs. Under this scheme, Sojourn provides the means for homeowners to include their property on the platform. With this comes customer support, marketing services, pricing assistance, security features, etc.
Curbing unemployment among real estate developers, this model ultimately provides the necessary foundation to offer STRs to large audiences.
Based on Sojourn’s technology, pricing and high-quality standards, it can allegedly increase property values by up to 40 percent. According to the founders, the short-term hospitality sector is also growing six times faster than traditional accommodation models.
Redwood Ventures certainly sees the potential.
“Through improvements in occupancy and quality, we are very excited to invest in Sojourn not only for the market potential we visualize but for the great capacity and experience that we see in the team,” added Otero. “We hope to grow significantly and support them in its expansion process in Mexico.”
In case you missed it, the past few weeks have also been pretty epic for Latin American proptech.
Whether in terms of QuintoAndar becoming a Brazilian proptech unicorn with its SoftBank investment, Flat raising a massive pre-seed round of US$4.5 million in Mexico, or OpenCasa from Chile raising US$14.5 million in structured debt, there’s plenty to celebrate.
Also, our upcoming podcast debuting this Friday will focus exclusively on proptech. We hope you tune in to learn more about this emerging sector. I don’t know about you, but I’m confident that we’ll be seeing more proptech investments throughout Latin America in the near future.