Cribspot has made a name for itself as a startup that helps connect college students to off-campus rental housing. Now the Ann Arbor-based company is aiming to become a national name in student housing.
The 1-year-old startup has raised $660,000 in seed capital from Bizdom
also has a location in downtown Detroit) and the First Step Fund
. Local venture capital firm Huron River Ventures led the round.
"We're going to see some real exciting growth from them in the next few years," says Tim Streit, partner with Huron River Ventures
Cribspot got its start as A2cribs when Tim Jones, Evan Dancer, Jason Okrasinski and Alex Gross (all University of Michigan students) created one central website for off-campus housing. Finding off-campus housing is usually an archaic mess made up of ads on Craigslist, newspapers, and on the sides of the buildings. Cribspot looks to solve that by giving landlords and students a central location to advertise and find off-campus housing.
Cribspot is currently on 15 campuses across the U.S., adding 10 more to its list this fall with Michigan State University, University of Iowa, and the University of Texas. More universities are set to come online soon.
"We're trying to grow as fast as we can," says Okrasinski, co-founder & CEO of Cribspot. "We plan to open in Detroit at Wayne State University in the next few months."
Which will mean more campus reps. Cribspot currently employs a staff of six people and is looking to hire three more. Even more hires in the form of campus reps are set to happen soon thanks to the seed round.
"We're using that money for the marketing and user growth," Okrasinski says. "We're also using it for new hires."
Source: Tim Streit, partner with Huron River Ventures; and Jason Okrasinski, co-founder & CEO of Cribspot
Writer: Jon Zemke
Read more about Metro Detroit's growing entrepreneurial ecosystem at SEMichiganStartup.com.