The Mexican short-term rentals marketplace operator Casai has merged with its Brazilian counterpart Nomah.
Existing investors including a16z and Monashees have pledged an undisclosed amount in the combined entity along with Nomah's former owner Loft.
Under the terms of the merger, both Casai and Nomah will keep their respective brands with Casai co-founder Nico Barawid becoming CEO and Nomah co-founder Thomas Guz taking on the role of President.
On the merger of the two former rivals, Barawid told Exame.com: “Hospitality is one of the biggest factors contributing to the economic development of the region. Over the past few years, more and more people have discovered Latin America’s culture, cuisine, landscapes and history. The merger is a giant step forward for the hotel industry in the region”.
Both Casai and Nomah operate short-term curated rentals in upmarket neighbourhoods catering to young urban professionals. While Casai operates in both Mexico and, since May 2021, in Brazil as well, Nomah operates only in its native Brazil. Both marketplaces employ a model similar to that of Kasa Living, Sonder and others in the United States which has seen a great deal of VC interest.
News of the merger and fresh investment will be a welcome relief for Casai employees coming just weeks after Bloomberg reported that the startup was forced to let go of some 60 employees in Brazil and 20 in Mexico. There had also been reports that Barawid had warned all employees that the company's outlook was not good and that they ought to start looking for jobs elsewhere.
In 2020 Casai raised Series A funds totalling $48 million just a year after its foundation. After suffering the worst of the pandemic the company went cap in hand to investors earlier this year and was ultimately spared from taking drastic measures by a16z and Weclickd stumping up the money to keep the firm in business.