MultifamilyReal Estate

Amazon invests in smart apartment platform SmartRent

New investment wants to create more smart apartments

SmartRent, a smart home automation platform for property managers and renters, already boasts some of the biggest names in multifamily real estate among its backers.

And now, the company has an even bigger name in its corner: Amazon.

SmartRent announced this week that it received a strategic investment from the Amazon Alexa Fund, an Amazon venture capital arm that invests in companies that use voice and other technology, as well as new contributions to the science behind those technologies.

Last year, SmartRent received $5 million in funding, led by Real Estate Technology Ventures, an early stage venture capital firm that is backed by AimcoBoardwalkEssex Property TrustMAAUDRStarwood Capital GroupCortland, and GID.

Now, Amazon has invested as well.

According to SmartRent, the companies will develop software and hardware for multifamily housing environments and turn them into connected communities. SmartRent already offers smart lock and voice control to property renters and renters. 

The company stated that this funding round doubled its previous capital raise at that time. Since the raise of its seed round in January 2017, SmartRent has grown by more than 50%.

“The multifamily housing market has been largely overlooked when it comes to central installation and management of smart home technologies as a way to create a more modern, differentiated and safer renting experience for residents,” said Lucas Haldeman, CEO of SmartRent. 

The Alexa Fund provides up to $200 million in venture capital funding to companies, fueling voice technology innovation, much like its namesake, Alexa. SmartRent is one of the many companies already in the Alexa Fund portfolio. 

According to a release, SmartRent said it wants to fill a void in the multifamily housing industry and offer smart home platforms for this market. 

“We are honored to be recognized by the Amazon Alexa Fund as a company that is leading the way in smart home automation,” Haldeman said. “Our centralized application through which multifamily communities can manage their smart devices will have an even wider range of applications thanks to this funding, and to the opportunities to work more closely with other companies in the Alexa Fund portfolio.”

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