This female-founded startup takes the headache out of finding short-term event spaces in the Big Apple
Anybody who has ever tried to find that perfect location to hold a last minute showing, the right atmosphere to make that meeting a deal maker, or an unforgettable party with close friends knows how painful it can be to make it come together. The team at Splacer is looking to turn this experience on its head with their easy to use marketplace for connecting users with property owners. Currently based in Tel Aviv, the Splacer crew is looking to up their game with the injection of $1.4 million raised in seed funding that was led by Carmel Ventures. Along with the cash from Carmel and a number of angel investors that was announced on Wednesday, Splacer has set their sights on expanding their services to New York City.
Finding hidden gems through connections
Company founders Adi Biran and Lihi Gerstner built Splacer in the hopes of discovering new opportunities for both renters and property owners to connect in order to better maximize the incredible spaces that are available in different locations. In late 2014, they came together with CTO Lior Ash to found the company. The two Columbia University trained architects have cited their deep appreciation of design and repurposing previously unused spaces to widen the scope of people in their community. One of the features that the company has noted that helps to set them apart from similar services is their collection of commercial and private spaces that are available for a variety of uses to create a unique experience.
“Splacer is enabling people to create events in the most unconventional locations. The idea that spaces are dynamic is an interesting one, and we certainly believe in Splacer’s community-focused approach,” said Daniel Cohen, General Partner at Carmel Ventures, in a statement.
Reimagining the market
With companies like Airbnb opening up a new world of possibilities for person to person renting, there seems to be a real expansion of the concept to other economic sectors. Splacer offers advantages to both sides of the equation, allowing property owners to gain extra revenue by renting out their unused spaces while giving users access to previously untapped resources.
“We envision a sustainable world where spaces never go to waste,” said Adi Biran, co-founder and CEO of Splacer. “We believe people should better utilize and share spaces, especially in a wonderfully diverse city like New York.”
In recognizing this trend, Cohen added that, “The sharing economy has redefined how we work and travel; it’s about time the event industry embraced this new model.”
Splacer is not the first group to recognize the potential for connecting people online for short-term rentals. In the U.S., eVenues offers a similar service, albeit on a less attractive platform that is not as much fun to navigate on. In Europe, UK-based We Are Pop Up seems to have a pretty impressive set of options in a comparable range. Others like Liquid Space have more of a focus on work areas and meeting spots while Storefront has a large selection of spaces across the U.S. for retail use.
For now, Splacer is gearing up for their Beta run in NYC and is looking for participants while they make their big move.
Their concept of providing users with beautiful and unique locations through a peer to peer network has immense potential and is likely to receive a warm welcome when it reaches the shores of New York.
While Airbnb might have had some pushback after landing in the city when neighbors took issue with their buildings being turned into hotels, the folks at Splacer seem to be wading into more interesting (and potentially lucrative, if not niche) waters that should be a lot of fun to watch develop.