Acumen invests in hostel chain Aarusha Homes

Social venture capital investor Acumen has invested an undisclosed amount in Aarusha Homes Pvt Ltd, which runs a chain of low-budget hostels for students and migrant workers, as per a press statement.

The company, which operates 16 hostels across Bangalore, Hyderabad and Pune, will use the money to expand into five more cities over the next two to three years.

The company also runs several women-only accommodation units as 40 per cent of its tenants are female, it said.

“By providing young migrant students and workers with safe, affordable and quality housing, Aarusha not only enables them to live with dignity but also significantly improves their ability to sustain better livelihoods,” said Ajit Mahadevan, director, Acumen India.

The company, which was launched in 2007, had raised its first external funding from Elevar Equity Advisors.

It charges Rs 5,000 for single beds but tenants can opt for shared rooms with one to six beds per room. The price includes access to common bathrooms and living spaces, electricity and hot water. Tenants can also avail services such as food plans, internet and printer access, and washing machines through a pay-as-you-go model. The occupants, mostly in the age group of 18-30, are employed in the BPO, IT, retail, pharmaceutical and construction sectors.

Acumen mainly invests in companies that provide products or services to the bottom-of- the-pyramid income groups. The firm, founded in 2001, invests in India, Pakistan, East Africa, West Africa and Latin America. In India, Acumen invests in agriculture, education, energy, water sanitation, housing and healthcare.

Last year, Acumen invested an undisclosed amount in two education startups in India—Ignis Careers and Standard of Excellence in Education and Development.

Acumen had earlier invested in Bangalore-based LabourNet Services India Pvt Ltd, a company which provides work-integrated job training in the informal sector, pre-school chain Hippocampus Learning Centres and vocational training company Edubridge Learning.

Leave Your Comment(s)