Missafir, which offers professional property management solutions with a focus on short and mid-term rentals, has received an investment at $1.9 million valuation. The global vacation rental market has been growing rapidly in recent years and reached the size of $160 billion. Equipped with many years of sector experience, in addition to expertise in operational planning, Mehmet Yuksel - Founder and CEO, set out on a startup journey in November 2018. Missafir was created as the first short-term rental management platform in Turkey, with a long-term vision to take a leading position in the MENA region.
The startup offers both digital platform and tech-enabled operational solutions, and a wide range of services for property owners including but not limited to: interior design, professional photography, profile and listings management on more than 15 well-known international platforms, search engine optimisation as well as dynamic pricing to maximise rental income. Additionally, Missafir offers 24/7 customer support and check-in options, guests meet and greet service, professional cleaning, and laundry services. Mehmet Yuksel says, “Thanks to our broad range of professional solutions, the house owners no longer have to deal with any issues related to their rental properties, and they can keep live track of their performance through individually tailored digital dashboards. Thanks to the high-quality service and customer support, we give our guests peace of mind, thanks to which they often choose properties from our portfolio for recurring visits. As a result, we are able to make both hosts and guests satisfied and happy”.
There are many prominent names to be found amongst Missafir’s investors, such as Koc University - KWORKS, Mehmet Onarcan - experienced angel investor who took on the Lead Investor role, Emre Tok - former Vice President of Careem (acquired by Uber for $3.1 billion), Mehmet Çelikol - the founder of garajsepeti.com, Serkan Bağçe - the founder of startupmarket.co, Sercan Alıcı, Bahar Gücüyener Pardo Rokes, and Alper Şener - another tech entrepreneur and one of the members of Keiretsu Forum Turkey Angel Investors Network. Furthermore, Mete Varas - a serial entrepreneur and well-known name in PropTech, is also Missafir’s advisor.
“Missafir was one of the outstanding startups among our KWORKS’19 Accelerator Program. We wanted to continue to support its growth upon its successful completion of our programme, and therefore decided to proceed with the investment”, KWORKS Director Mahmut Özdemir commented on the initiative. Mehmet Onarcan summarised the investment process, “We did proceed with the investment for Missafir even though it operates in one of the most impacted sectors by COVID-19 pandemic. We have formed a strong investment network that will provide ‘smart money’. Missafir had established solid foundations that helped retain its market presence during these unprecedented circumstances. Crises of different natures are always present during the lifetime of a startup. The key to long-term success is the ability to turn the crisis into an opportunity, and this can only be achieved by strong teams and through collaboration. Missafir has a team that is capable of this and we are confident that they will create a success story with the support of our investors”.
Mehmet Yuksel highlights that thanks to this investment, Missafir has broadened the focus on opportunities emerging during the crisis and is now considering expansion into new domestic markets such as Bodrum, Çeşme, and Antalya in addition to maintaining their growth in Istanbul.
COVID-19 further suppressed the number of deals in MENA-based startups in April but total funding increased by 202% as EMPG joined MENA’s unicorn list by raising $150M from existing shareholders. Learn more details in MAGNiTT’s April 2020 Dashboard.