Chaz Englander, Fat Lama CEO
The online peer-to-peer rental marketplace will use the funds to fuel its US growth and expand its product, engineering and operations teams in London.
Fat Lama, an online marketplace for lending and borrowing anything, is on a mission to change the way we own things.
Unlike other sharing platforms, the company insures every rental for up to £20,000, which allows users to rent out expensive items like high-end cameras and campervans.
Fat Lama users are making and saving impressive sums of money. Some lenders are already earning up to £7,000 per month in rental income.
In total, those borrowing through the platform are saving an estimated £8.5m per month in non-purchases.
Now, the company is looking to upscale its operations after closing a £7.1m Series A funding round led by Blossom Capital, with Atomico and existing investor Y Combinator participating.
Just as eBay emerged two decades ago to allow people to buy and sell anything, Fat Lama is fast establishing itself as the cross-category rental equivalent.
This latest investment round will be used to grow its user base in the US after a successful launch in New York, where over 6,000 items have already been listed on the site.
Chaz Englander, CEO, believes the company’s growth comes down to more than the insurance cover: “As consumers, we’re becoming less and less interested in owning things,” he said.
“At Fat Lama, we believe that one day, actually owning those things we only occasionally need will be as ridiculous as buying a house every time you want to go on holiday.
“People can enjoy using items without the financial burden or environmental implications of owning them.”
Ophelia Brown, founder of Blossom Capital, added: “Fat Lama is truly transforming the way that consumers think about ownership.
“It’s impressive how strong their brand is in the market - rarely do we see this at such an early stage in a company’s life.
“The platform works in both large cities and remote areas as it’s an easy way for anyone with items to rent to earn a substantial income.
“We’re excited to work with such a formidable team and help them expand on their mission.”
Existing investors in Fat Lama include Y Combinator, Greylock Partners, Paul Buchheit (Gmail creator) and Justin Waldron (co-founder of Zynga).
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