A London startup has raised £2.3 million ‘to help solve the UK housing crisis’.

SearchLand was created in 2020 to serve the new homes industry with better land and property planning information. 

The founding team includes Mitchell Fasanya, previously co-founder and CTO of Fanbytes; Hugh Gibbs, an experienced land & planning consultant; Archie Kennedy-Dyson, previously co-founder & CTO of a global virtual queuing app; and Arthur Goodhart, former lead data scientist at an optic sensor startup.

It has now has been backed by Fuel Ventures in its mission to transform housebuilding in the UK by changing how property professionals source their development land and ultimately build more homes to satisfy demand.

“Having tried to find a site of my own to build on, I discovered there was very considerable friction in the land-sourcing process,” said Fasanya.

The team found that developers were having to trawl through a myriad of clunky databases to find sites. Existing digital tools were prohibitively expensive for the majority of developers and were also failing to help them to get round the antiquated site sourcing process. 

As a result, even though the property industry was rich in planning data, it wasn’t being leveraged fast or effectively to meet housing demands.

By bringing together their joint expertise in planning, data, and software, the team was able to create a powerful online platform offering developers, architects, planners and land sourcers a more comprehensive and – importantly – easy to use source of land and property information.

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Last year SearchLand was backed by the Geovation Accelerator Programme. So far, over 418,000 potential development sites have been saved on the SearchLand platform by its customers.

With the new funding, it plans to integrate more datasets for England and Wales; increase digitisation and automation; deploy its Land Assembly tool, which will let users draw their planned development plots in detail; and enter new markets.

“SearchLand has created a powerful and highly scalable product that is set to become the industry standard for land sourcing, thanks to its customer driven approach and speed of innovation,” said Mark Pearson, founder of Fuel Ventures.

“We are gearing up to make SearchLand the face of UK land sourcing in 2023. Our clients and stakeholders will be well placed to meet the ongoing challenges of the UK housing market.”

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