Zoopla’s Alex Chesterman joins Octopus Investments to back Uniplaces

A seed funding round for Uniplaces worth £700,000 has attracted contributions from Octopus Investments, Alex Chesterman and William Reeve.

Student accommodation website Uniplaces has closed its second institutional funding round by linking up with London-based Octopus Investments.

The business, which provides a booking system for university accommodation, has also courted interest from angel investors Alex Chesterman, founder and CEO of Zoopla Property Group, and William Reeve, chairman of Graze.

Uniplaces markets both privately rented accommodation and professionally managed student residences and has helped students from China, Brazil and Uzbekistan find rooms.

Back in July 2012 Uniplaces closed its first funding round when Chesterman, Reeve and Shilling Capital Partners contributed to a €200,000 backing when the company launched in Lisbon. Going forward the company will be headquartered in London.

Ben Grech, co-founder of Uniplaces, comments, ‘We are very happy to be working with such high quality investors who recognise the scale of the opportunity for Uniplaces.

‘We know that Uniplaces is desperately needed in cities around the world, and the financial backing of Octopus will help us to get there faster.’

The coming together of Octopus with Chesterman and Reeves follows on from investment deals in both Zoopla Property Group and Graze. Angel investor Chesterman has also invested in SportPursuit and Huddlebuy.

More on Octopus Investments:

Rebecca Marshall, member of the ventures team at Octopus Investments, says that the firm sees great potential in other geographical regions outside of the UK.

‘Uniplaces is an innovative business model that has found a niche in a large and attracter market,’ she adds.

‘The growth in the number of students, in particular those travelling abroad for university courses, is giving rise to an increased demand for reliable accommodation, particularly that which can be booked online.’

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter was the Editor for GrowthBusiness.co.uk from 2012 to 2014, before moving on to Caspian Media Ltd to be Editor of Real Business.

Related Topics

Early Stage Funding