Comfy’s Bill-Splitting App for Roommates Garners $1.25M Series A
Comfy, an Austin, TX-based free online service that helps college students locate new housing, has secured a $1.25 million Series A round from existing investor ATX Seed Ventures as the company begins shifting its focus to a newly launched bill-paying app that it hopes will earn it more money.
In March, Comfy launched Unbill, an app that allows roommates to split bills and living expenses. Individuals can use the app to pay anything from the cable to the phone bill, according to CEO Jordan Wright. The company is expanding the type of services the tool can pay, most recently adding rent to the list, Wright says.
Along with the financing, Comfy announced it has inked a partnership with Conservice, a company that manages utility bills for property managers across the nation, which will make Unbill the suggested mobile payment platform for all of the apartment buildings Conservice works with, Wright says. Conservice, which participated in the Series A investment, has millions of customers that Comfy has the opportunity to service with Unbill, he says.
“We’ll be able to market to potentially all of them,” Wright said in a telephone interview. “We want to be in a position to be cash flowing by the middle to end of next year.”
Unbill typically charges a 99-cent fee for most of its services if paid using a checking account, and an additional percentage for using a credit card (around 3 percent, depending on the card), Wright says. Comfy, which will also have customers outside of its partnership with Conservice, will pay a referral fee to the company for any customers it brings, Wright says.
Founded in 2013, Comfy initially launched as an online service meant to help college roommates find new housing. It developed Unbill as a way to earn money from those customers, who already used the Comfy service for free, Wright says.
College students and the other younger folks Comfy seems to be targeting may be a notoriously poor set, but that isn’t a concern to Wright. He says that people are willing to pay for a service that makes tracking, paying, and splitting bills easier, because paying bills can be so difficult with roommates.
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