Online property search portal 99.co officially launches today with an expansion of its services into the residential sales segment and new investments totaling SG$2.7 million to date.
The site claims to display unbiased search results, which are personalised to the query of the end user and sorted by the quality of the listing data versus by the promotional spend of the agents.
Since its soft-launch in November last year, 99.co has introduced two mobile apps and ListRank, an algorithm that provides users the best and most relevant search results, and in the process doubled its web traffic.
The word for number 9 in Chinese also sounds like another word, (久) which symbolises ‘longevity’ in Chinese and Japanese culture, hence the organisation’s name choice as they look to build long-lasting relationships with customers and partners, as well as to establish business permanence in Singapore.
With its business model validated by such strong early traction, 99.co brings its user-centric edge to property sales by extending its services from previously just residential rental by allowing people to also find homes to purchase. With the rate of listings increasing at 50% a month, users can now browse through one of the most comprehensive databases of Singapore’s property—for rent or for sale.
“We really believe that the market needs a property search that prioritizes the user—and the numbers show that more and more people on the search for the next home are clearly prefer the way we cater to their needs with unbiased search results and genuine listings,” said Darius Cheung (pictured, left), CEO and co-founder of 99.co.
99.co also announced new funding with additional investments coming from Sequoia Capital and Eduardo Saverin, co-founder of Facebook, bringing 99.co’s total funding to S$2.7 million.
“When I was trying to find a home for myself here in Singapore a few years ago, 99.co didn’t exist and I naturally explored all web and mobile tools available, and I was nothing short of disappointed,” said Saverin (pictured, right). “Were the listings real and available? Was the pricing data and other details accurate? Why so many duplicates? It was a high-friction and time consumer experience that had to change99.co has the superstar team needed to tackle this incredibly hard but important issue.”
“Not only is finding a home the biggest financial decision most people would ever make, it is also one of the most important milestones in life for one to create the right environment to develop a career, to build a marriage and to nurture a family and children – it affects everything! I’m very excited to see the growth of 99.co and it’s a clear indicator that it is on the right path to create the solution to truly help people live better.”
With the official launch and introduction of the entirely new residential sales segment, 99.co expects to see even more growth in its traffic as the startup continues to innovate towards its goal of first becoming Singapore’s number one online property portal by catering directly to its users.