Zibo, a banking and payment system for separate landlords, announced today it has increased $10.5 million in seed financing to greatly scale its one-stop-shop strategy to fiscal management for residential rental properties.
“It’s a pretty large round and we’ve got some of the best venture capital partners out there,” states Chris Hsu, co-founder and CEO of the Redwood City, California-based startup.
Directed by Canaan Partners, that has backed a variety of rising property technology companies, Zibo’s funding round also attracted in funding from QED Investors, SVB Capital and Khosla Ventures.
Hsu, a former chief operating officer at Hewlett Packard Enterprise
In the previous few months, working at a private beta manner, Zibo has facilitated the group of $250,000 in lease payments for “a handful” of taxpayers, Hsu says. Some of the seed capital will underwrite the growth of Zibo’s customer foundation through education and outreach, he adds.
Nationally, there are approximately 11 million separate landlords, who collectively own about a half of all rental units in the nation, but just about 3 million people rely upon any sort of applications for their financing, says Hsu. Contrary to their institutional peers, a great deal of mom-and-pop landlords lack the fiscal bandwidth to invest in financial and land management tools.
“If you talk to these independent landlords, what they can tell you is that they spend an inordinate amount of time just staying organized,” Hsu states. “By the nature of having multiple properties in a portfolio, they have multiple bank accounts, different security deposit accounts for each building or unit or tenant. Then they have operating accounts that are tied to where they got a mortgage from.”
Many of the current businesses which cater to small landlords address only particular aspects of running a rental company. Zibo, on the other hand, provides a wide package of purposes. Through the proprietary algorithms and tech suppliers, Zibo unifies landlords’ financial documents, letting them securely connect different bank accounts and transfer money. The platform also keeps information to expedite the filling from loan and insurance programs and also to help prepare tax records.
“[Zibo’s] easy, compact technology platform empowers rental property owners to manage their finances and automate procedures that should have been automatic quite a while ago,” explained Rich Boyle, general partner at Canaan Partners, at a media announcement.
A proptech remedy to your private difficulty
For Hsu, Zibo is your stage that he desired a landlord. Some two years ago, after leaving from the U.S. Army, he entered the home rental market to construct family wealth with his spouse.
“We’ve experienced every pain point that exists, including trying to build my own tooling in Excel to better manage these properties so that they takes a lot less time from a financial perspective,” Hsu states.
Following a career in the tech industry, Hsu started to frame his thought for Zibo as a stage for its “underserved landlord” in late 2018 when he partnered with the company’s two additional co-founders, Chairman Greg Watson (co-founder of Roofstock, an investment land company ) and Rob Bloemker (who uttered Dwell Finance a creditor for single-family leasing property investors).
Nowadays, Zibo has 34 workers. With property tech, or proptech, quickly gaining ground, the internet disruption Hsu expects his firm to blaze is solely in its nascence.
“[We are in] the beginning of a huge terminal migration of old-school offline strategies, record payments, interacting with all contractors and tenants, into a virtual universe,” Hsu says. “Zibo is in the heart of that.”