Alibaba founder invests in China home-sharing service Xiaozhu
Xiaozhu, a rival to Airbnb in China, has raised $120 million in its latest financing round, bringing it to unicorn status.
The funding round is led by Yunfeng Capital which was founded in early 2010 and named after Alibaba founder and chairman Jack Ma and Target Media founder Yu Feng.
Existing investors including Joy Capital, Morningside Ventures, and Capital Today also participated.
The round came after another Chinese rival Tujia, announced last month that its online platform has closed $300 million in funding, backed by Ctrip.
Xiaozhu has now raised almost $270 million. The company received $65 million in C+ and D rounds last November.
The company has been trading for five years and has been part of China’s online home-sharing industry explosion.
Since its last round of funding in 2016, Xiaozhu has grown rapidly and become the absolute leader in market share, service system and other areas.
Kelvin Chen Chi, co-founder and CEO says:
“After five years of exploration, Xiaozhu pioneered house-sharing business model in China and created a new bilateral market from ground up by building an entire service system that consists of cleaning and photography services.”
Home sharing was pioneered and has thrived in western countries but it has not been easy for overseas home-sharing companies to develop in China.
Chen Chi adds:
“Only local companies with a sense of mission and commitment to the domestic market can stand a chance in gaining leadership in the Chinese market.”
Li Na, managing director of Yunfeng Capital, says:
“Xiaozhu has developed a proven successful model for house sharing to develop in China.
“Yunfeng Capital is looking forward to witnessing and helping it grow rapidly and drive the upgrading and transformation of Chinese accommodation industry, providing better accommodation experiences to more users.”
Li Xiao, founding partner of Joy Capital says:
“Joy Capital is very optimistic about sharing economy. Now that the entire market is rapidly maturing, we believe that Xiaozhu will continue to lead the house sharing industry.”
Cheng Yu, a partner of Morningside Ventures claims the Xiaozhu team took a seemingly slow but right way to cultivate this market from ground up and create value for users.
Xu Xin, president of Capital Today, says:
“Believing in the sharing economy, we invested in Xiaozhu three years ago and have waited for the Spring to come. And now, the Spring has come.”
Founded in 2012, Xiaozhu now has listings in more than 400 destinations in and outside of China.
As home-sharing becomes popular, people are focusing more on the security element of it.
Chen Chi says:
“Xiaozhu will invest more resources to introduce technologies further enhancing security of house-sharing and building a sustainable platform ecosystem for the whole industry.”