AP NEWS

Milwaukee-based corporate housing startup to expand

July 8, 2018

MILWAUKEE (AP) — A Milwaukee-based startup that assists business travelers by setting them up in apartments is looking to expand to seven more cities by the end of the year.

Frontdesk launched in 2017 and generates $250,000 a month at its 75 units in Milwaukee, Indianapolis and Charlotte, North Carolina, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.

Frontdesk focuses on serving young business travelers who want to book online and stay in neighborhoods to experience the life of the city’s residents. The company operates its own units, differing from Airbnb, where individuals can rent out their homes or apartments.

Frontdesk CEO Kyle Weatherly said the company’s market is found outside those who typically use corporate housing. It aims to give people who work for smaller firms access to corporate-style housing.

“In the corporate housing space, companies like us can focus more on the product and providing a seamless guest experience online — you don’t even have to talk to anyone if you don’t want to,” said Frontdesk Chief Technology Officer Jesse DePinto. “The millennial travelers just want to book a place and come straight off the plane and walk straight into a unit.”

The company is looking to expand into second-tier cities, Weatherly said. Competitors in the corporate housing market have already moved into gateway cities such as Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York.

Frontdesk doesn’t plan on expanding in Milwaukee. Weatherly said the couple dozen units in the area are used as test sites. About 75 percent of Frontdesk’s revenue comes from outside Wisconsin.

The expansion will be fueled by a $750,000 funding round led by Lancaster Investments.

___

Information from: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, http://www.jsonline.com

AP RADIO
Update hourly