Hubble, an online platform for flexible office space, has secured £4m from a group of investors, led by JLL’s Spark global venture fund.
This is the first European investment for JLL Spark, the venture capital arm of the property and investment management giant.
Other investors include Downing Ventures and the directors of M7 Real Estate, owner of commercial property management and data software firm Coyote. Starwood Capital has also increased its stake significantly via specialist proptech fund Concrete.
Hubble matches companies looking to rent office space with those who have it, with a focus on co-working, shared offices and private serviced offices. The London-based startup covers the entire transaction so businesses can search, pay their rent, and sign contracts all on the platform.
The funding will be used to invest further into Hubble’s technology platform, developing its offering to attract bigger businesses, of 50 people or more, as the demand for flexible office space from larger businesses rises. According to Hubble, the company places a business into a new office every 3 hours.
Tushar Agarwal, CEO of Hubble, said back in 2014 when the company was founded their average client was a “5-person startup needing desks in a coworking space for a few months” and now they’re helping “businesses with 50 staff or large multinationals renting space for a year or more”.
He added the traditional lease market with its 10-year terms and upfront costs is “no longer fit for purpose”.
Mihir Shah, co-CEO at JLL Spark, commented the firm is continuing to see an “increase in demand for flexible office space”.
Michael Tefula, associate at Downing Ventures said “Hubble brings us closer to what we believe is the future of property”, and Taylor Wescoatt, partner at Concrete, said they “firmly believe in Hubble’s vision of becoming the Booking.com for this sector.”
Hubble will also be using the funding to invest in the data infrastructure of its large real-time dataset on flexible office space, to help support flexible office providers, such as WeWork and IWG, in improving their offerings.
To support its growth, Hubble has hired one new team member a week over the past 15 weeks causing the technology team to double in size. The property advisory team has also been boosted by the hiring of Mark Lewarne, ex-IWG, as director of special projects. Holly Hardy and Freddie Cousens have also joined from GL Hearn and Colliers International respectively.