Searchland, a London-based land-sourcing automation startup, has raised £2.3 million in seed funding from Fuel Ventures (also invested in Guider Pocket) to help property developers build more homes.
The UK-based company will use the funds to integrate additional datasets and further automate land-sourcing processes to rapidly find, validate, and acquire off-market sites for development.
Amid a scarcity of land for development in the UK, property companies use over thirty data resources to assess a site’s development potential. Faced with the higher site and build costs, developers need to be more confident in their margins. This contributes to the lack of supply of new homes and the ongoing housing crisis in the UK.
“Having tried to find a site of my own to build on, I discovered there was considerable friction in the land sourcing process’” comments co-founder and CEO Mitchell Fasanya. “The property industry is rich in data, but it wasn’t being leveraged effectively, and developers had to trawl through many clunky databases to track down the information they needed. Moreover, while modern digital tools had emerged, they failed to eradicate the industry’s antiquated processes and were prohibitively expensive for most developers.”
Land sourcing automation
Founded by Mitchell Fasanya, Hugh Gibbs, Arthur Goodhart, and Archie Kennedy-Dyson, Searchland is the next-generation platform for land sourcing. To reiterate, Mitchell Fasanya (26 year old), previously co-founded influencer marketing agency FanBytes, which was later acquired by Brainlabs (an eight figure exit).
By integrating the relevant data sets, Searchland has created a rich mosaic of the country’s property that provides developers with all the insights they need in a single click.
Developers can instantly uncover sites that meet specific criteria, including the percentage of undeveloped land, use class, and building height and review key information, such as planning history, ownership, and constraints, without leaving the platform.
The company’s customers include Places for People, Galliford Try, and Aster Group.
“In less than a year, we’ve built the most sophisticated platform for land sourcing, and we have a conversion rate of 70-80%. Ultimately we want to offload all of the admin-heavy tasks for developers so they can focus on what they do best – building homes. This funding round will allow us to accelerate product development and advance further ahead of the competition,” continues Mitchell Fasanya.
“Searchland has created a very powerful and highly scalable product that is set to become the industry standard for land sourcing thanks to its customer-driven approach and pace of innovation. We were very impressed by the team and were keen to lead the current round with a significant ticket,” comments Mark Pearson, founder, and managing partner at Fuel Ventures.