After pandemic speed bump, Airbnb cleaning startup Neu bounces back and raises $700K

Kwame Boler, left, and Claudius Mbemba, co-founders of Neu. (Neu Photos)

Neu was in trouble when the COVID-19 pandemic hit earlier this year. The company’s business, which provides cleaning services to Airbnb hosts, dried up seemingly overnight. The Seattle startup furloughed its operations team and had to re-evaluate its entire roadmap.

But as vacation rental bookings started to recover, Neu bounced back. It added masks, gloves, and disinfectants into its supply chain, and ensured that it met Airbnb’s new enhanced cleaning protocols.

“Ultimately, we persevered and the pandemic forced our company to evolve to best cater to the needs of our customers and recognize ways that we could do more,” said Neu co-founder Kwame Boler.

Now the Techstars Seattle graduate has fresh capital to fuel growth. Neu just raised a $700,000 round led by New Stack Ventures. Techstars and MTT Ventures also participated, along with individual investors including Rudy Gadre, Forest Key, Adam Brownstein, Brian Saab, Greg Greely, and Bob Crimmins.

The cash will be used in part to help Neu expand to Scottsdale, Az. later this year.

Puget Sound Business Journal first reported the new funding.

Neu is focused on vacation rentals but has its sights on a much larger vision of targeting other verticals such as commercial and residential.

“Currently, we’re disrupting the vacation rental industry, but inevitably, we’ll build the world’s largest cleaning platform,” Boler said.

Neu participated in the most recent Techstars Seattle cohort. Boler and his co-founder Claudius Mbemba were among the finalists for Young Entrepreneur of the Year at this year’s GeekWire Awards. Neu was also part of GeekWire’s Elevator Pitch series in 2018.

The 9-person company has raised $800,000 to date.

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