Xiaomi and Spotify are two very recognizable brands these days. Xiaomi is a China-based smartphone manufacturer which grew immensely ever since it was founded back in 2010, and is now one of the largest smartphone manufacturing companies in China. Spotify, on the other hand, is a Sweden-based music and video company which is very well-known for streaming music, podcasts, and video. What do these two companies have in common? Well, read on.
Spotify's founders, Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon, along with Xiaomi's VP, Hugo Barra, have decided to invest some funds into Student.com, a UK-based international student accommodation marketplace. Student.com has actually raised $60 million in this investment round, and the three individuals we've mentioned aren't the only ones that invested in Student.com. They're joined by a global investment firm VY Capital, Horizons Ventures and Expa. Now, the site will invest the cash into international expansions to the US, Middle East and Latin America. That being said, Student.com will have listings in 426 cities for over 1,000 universities by the end of 2016, which is impressive. This startup actually employs over 200 people in various regions, London, Hong Kong, New York and Shanghai. It is also worth mentioning that this site is available in various languages (11 thus far), which is always an advantage, especially considering they're aiming to be available pretty much everywhere.
"The student housing market is arguably one of the single biggest industries not yet digitised. With Student.com, we're not only enabling international students the world over too quickly and easily find housing abroad; we're also giving landlords a digital and global infrastructure to reach millions of students," said Shakil Khan, the co-founder of Student.com. According to Student.com, over 5 million students are actually studying abroad these days, and that number is constantly rising, which makes sense. The startup has also said that they've earned $110 million in bookings in 2015 from students in more than 100 countries. It will be interesting to see what will happen with the company by the end of the year, but they have incredible perspective, and it seems like Hugo Barra and Spotify's co-founder realized that.