StayAbode - Professionally Managed Co-living Spaces

Many young people every year move out of their home towns in pursuit of better education or to search better employment opportunities. A common problem these youth has to face in the new cities is that of finding decent accommodation. Looking for a well-maintained place within budget, arranging furniture, finding good companions,  arranging for domestic help, wi-fi and TV connections, all this is quite stressful for students and young professionals moving to new cities. But now, a different concept is fast becoming popular among the youths in India, which solves all these worries and makes shifting to a new city easier. Co-living is the new way of living for the youth who are staying away from their hometowns. StayAbode a Bangalore based startup founded in 2016, has become quite a popular name in the field of co-living spaces.

Startup Name StayAbode
Headquarter Bangalore
Founders Viral Chhajer, Varun Bhalla & Devashish Dalmiya
Sector Real Estate/Co-living
Founded 2016
Parent Organization Stayabode Ventures Private Limited

About StayAbode
StayAbode Founders and CEO
How was StayAbode Started
StayAbode - Name and Logo
What is StayAbode
StayAbode - Business Model and Revenue Model
StayAbode - Funding and Investors
StayAbode - User Acquisition
StayAbode - Startup Challenges
StayAbode - Competitors
StayAbode - Future Plans

About StayAbode

StayAbode provides professionally managed co-living spaces on rent. StayAbode takes care of all the accommodation related worries that one faces on moving to a new city. From furnishing to security from housekeeping to maintenance, StayAbode manages it all.

StayAbode uses design, technology, service and brand to build co-living spaces for the rental residential market at scale. StayAbode’s co-living spaces support the lifestyle of the young, single sociable household, enabling a high level of comfort, convenience and a sense of community with shared spaces such as kitchens, common areas, game areas, and places to dine and work. StayAbode’s co-living spaces are building the future of residential real estate for the urban millennials.

Estimates tell us it is a $93bn real estate opportunity, and the numbers differ but it is overall the rental market for millennials and that is a significant chunk of the rental residential market today and can only grow if this young consumer continues to choose co-living across the stages in their life. Today from student living to millennial living, the market is only expanding to cover the entire unorganized PG and rental market.

Relevant Read: Colive- Transforming Urban Housing through Chic Co-living Spaces

StayAbode Founders and CEO

Viral Chhajer, Varun Bhalla and Devashish Dalmiya founded StayAbode in 2016.

Viral Chhajer is the CEO of StayAbode. He is a graduate in Business Administration and worked with companies like Goldman Sachs and Runnr, before StayAbode. He also co-founded Bribe Me, an app that is India’s first flash sale marketplace that allows users to avail exclusive offers in real time. Viral exited Bribe Me in 2015.

Varun Bhalla is a computer science graduate and was also a part of Bribe Me venture with Viral. Prior to StayAdobe Varun worked as a mobile app developer in companies like foOfys and Treebo Hotels.

Devasish Dalmiya holds a bachelor degree in business administration. Devashish and Viral are an alumnus of Christ University Bangalore. Devashish had been a part of companies like International Money Matters Pvt Ltd,  Right Horizons Investment Advisory and Wealth Management Pvt Ltd and Roadhouse Hostels, before starting up StayAbode.

How was StayAbode Started

“It all started off with independent living,” says Devashish. Devashish noticed that though people somehow manage to find a living space in cities, they are left with many unsolved problems. They do not find like minded people to live with, plus just finding a home is not enough, there are lots to take care of like food, furnishing, etc. While, Devashish was backpacking across Europe,  he saw that there were managed communities where students lived together, and wanted to introduce the same concept in India also.

He pondered on the issues young people moving to a new city were facing. “It pretty much boils down to two- uncertainty and loneliness. It’s not just enough that they have to navigate a new and unknown real estate market, they also have to figure out how to mesh in with the city and its people so that they don’t keep feeling like outsiders”.

There are 3 types of people who come to the city any given day: tourist, traveler or settler. While the tourist and traveler have their own defined solutions, the settler is the group that needs the ecosystem, both of great living space and a like-minded community. That’s the category which StayAbode aims its services at. StayAbode was started with the intention to create a brand that allows the settlers to maximize their productivity with a supportive community and a hassle-free living experience.

“StayAbode is the answer to all your big city living woes,”

The concept is fairly new in India. But data shows young professionals and students would prefer to stay at places where they can be part of a community while having their own little piece of private space. StayAbode enables this by using technology and design thinking to create private spaces and common areas that lead to collisions that bring the community together.

Living with like-minded people and engendering a community of people ready to share and create together, can be the perfect recipe for the millennial living experience. When you live and learn together, you grow together. Imagine being able to meet new people, be supremely productive, come home to a great living space and be able to truly find yourself in a new city. Life suddenly seems so simple.

The idea was to build a brand that solves for living across the journey of a consumer from the first time they become independent in life all the way into their retirement years.

StayAbode Logo

“We were looking for a name that could encompass this entire journey and we felt that ‘Abode’ captured that. To reinforce the ‘living’ emotion, we liked the way StayAbode worked and it was something that was effortless and rolled off smoothly”.

Relevant Read: Now Find Your Preferred Room and Roommate with RentRoomi

What is StayAbode

StayAbode solves for all the living issues that young professionals face when they move to a new city. From difficult landlords to high deposits and unfair rentals, StayAbode is the solution for all.

Currently operating in Bangalore, StayAbode offers beautiful, fully furnished living spaces. These spaces are designed in a way that the residents have their own private spaces plus there are shared spaces for working, dining, kitchen spaces, etc. Thus the residents continue to have their private space along with a community of like-minded people, which do not let them feel lonely and left-out in the new city.

The facilities that StayAbode provides to its dwellers include-

  • Fully furnished living spaces
  • Housekeeping services
  • On-site laundry
  • All-inclusive rent
  • A nominal deposit, that is easy on the pocket.
  • Living spaces are fully secured
  • Expert team for repairing/ maintenance work
  • Resident only app, through which one can avail various services and get updates.
We believe we are well set to solve for millennial living in today’s sharing economy where the consumer gives access, a greater significance than ownership.

A community of like-minded and inspiring individuals, a designated community manager who takes care of every need of the residents and the policy of indiscrimination that lets everyone irrespective of gender, marital status, etc be a part of its co-living community are some of the USPs StayAbode.

StayAbode - Business Model and Revenue Model

StayAbode follows a full-stack business model, not a part-inventory one. It leases out complete buildings – from the basement to the terrace, and turn them into co-living spaces. After that, StayAbode’s team puts together the furniture and common-room setups, ensuring the space has everything that a tenant needs, including add-ons like community kitchens, study areas, reading spaces and even barbeque grills in some properties.  

As far as the revenue model is considered, StayAbode charges a fixed rent which covers living and utility expenses and has a defined margin with every landowner which differs from property to property. The company's objective is to create a win-win situation for itself and the propertyowners by ensuring high occupancy.

StayAbode - Funding and Investors

StayAbode has raised 4 rounds of funding till date.

Funding Date Funding Stage Funding Amount Investors
Februray 2017 Angel Undisclosed Angie Mahtaney & Ishan Manaktala
August 2017 Seed Undisclosed Incubate Fund
July 2018 Pre Series A Undisclosed Anupam Mittal, Vineet Sekhsaria, Lets Venture Legacy Global Projects MD Sanjay Shenoy and Mridul Upreti (ex Joint MD JLL India) and Akatsuki.
March 2019 Pre Series A Undisclosed Voyage Group, Akatsuki and Incubate Fund

StayAbode - User Acquisition

Referrals, SEM and social media marketing worked best for StayAbode. StayAbode is one of the first players in co-living spaces and people were quite curious about and eager to try this new concept. Besides, StayAbode was also building up the curiosity regarding co-living spaces through facebook posts.

The company launched its first few properties in popular location across Bangalore where the target group for co-living spaces was present.

“Cliched as it may sound, a great experience and community engagement in our business is the ultimate hack. We have seen the highest percentage of extensions where we have ensured a consistent experience across both the living and community experience. This has guaranteed us a fairly high rate of referrals across these properties too and we have always used these properties and the teams running them as a benchmark within the organization to ensure a consistent experience” says Devashish.

StayAbode - Startup Challenges

A major challenge, in the beginning, was solving the sales pitch for the property owners. There were property owners who hesitated about letting their properties being transformed by StayAbode in the process of designing co-living areas.   In such cases, the StayAbode team focused on explaining and showing the property owners how a well-designed property was allowing for better return and performance.

Relevant Read: NestAway- India's Fastest Growing 'Home Rental Network'

StayAbode - Competitors

Some competitors of StayAbode are Nestaway, CoLive, CoHo and OyoLiving.

An increasing number of players are now entering the co-living space but everyone tends to operate on different models with different focus areas.  StayAbode strives to stand out of the competition by providing excellent resident experience to its dwellers. While it is also constantly improving operational efficiency to give the property owners better value.

StayAbode - Future Plans

StayAbode is currently operating 19 properties in Bangalore. The company will add an additional 1200 beds in the coming months. It is also building Asia’s largest A grade co-living space in a partnership with CP Developers in the IT hub of Bangalore in ITPL, Whitefield.

Moving to a new city can be daunting and inconvenient. Over the last few years, it has become more challenging to find a convenient and fulfilling home on rent at an affordable cost. So, we decided to address this very issue by serving StayAbode as a solution - beautiful, fully-furnished private homes with shared spaces, that add value to our residents' lives at less cost. All said and done, we’re here to make a difference - in living and in lives.

Website - StayAbode

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About Chayanika Goswami

Chayanika is an MBA in Finance and a trained Digital Marketer. SEO and content writing are her hobbies turned profession. She is a rover. In her free time, she loves traveling and cracking jokes.