Real Estate

Former Cameron adviser raises additional £10m funding boost for Second Home

London Shoreditch

Start-up raises additional fund for international expansion

Start-up founded by an ex-Cameroon advisor has raised an additional £10m for international expansion, it is learnt. The shared workspace start-up co-founded by Rohan Silva has raised another £10m from investors amid soaring international demand from multinationals and technology start-ups. The level of investor interest in flexible office space has been growing rapidly. Second Home operates from different sites at present, including one in London’s Shoreditch, and will open three more sites in the capital.

Rohan Silva is understood to have raised the money with his co-founder and joint chief executive Sam Aldenton to fuel the company’s international expansion. Martin Lau, one of the Second Home shareholders and the founder of Chinese technology group Tencent, is believed to have contributed to the funding effort.

Sources said it was structured as a convertible instrument that would become equity when the next round probably next year.

Second Home’s founders are targeting 250,000 square feet of office space in London in 2019, and double that amount in the UK capital and Los Angeles by 2020.

WeWork’s stellar price tag has driven much of the appetite to back firms operating in the sector despite scepticism about whether it justifies its valuation.

Second Home has drawn the attention of top international brands such as Zegna, the Italian fashion label, Mercedes, and Cushman & Wakefield, the commercial real estate agent. Shareholder of the company includes the chairman of ITV, Sir Peter Bazalgette, top executives from the advertising agency M&C Saatchi, and Yuri Millner, the technology tycoon whose vehicle DST Global has backed some of the world’s largest internet companies. Mr Silva that the fact that EY, Volkswagen, Cushman & Wakefield and other global corporations have teams at Second Home shows how quickly the city is changing. He is looking to make most of the global opportunity through the latest investment round.

The company describes itself as “a creative accelerator”, harnessing the close proximity in which entrepreneurs are able to share ideas and make introductions to prospective business partners and investors.

He declined to comment on the implied valuation at which Second Home had raised its latest tranche of funding.

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The author Paul