Ten Questions With Antonio Mariscal, Co-Founder and CEO at ALCUBO

June 21, 2023
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 "If you can pay rent, you should be able to buy a home," says Antonio Mariscal, co-founder and CEO at ALCUBO.

Launched in the first week of June 2023, ALCUBO is perhaps the youngest proptech we have ever spoken to.

Built on the promise of making homeownership more accessible for young people, ALCUBO is a lease-to-buy platform that wants younger generations to get on the housing ladder—without a deposit.

We spoke to Antonio (pictured below on the right next to fellow co-founder, Alberto García) on topics including ALCUBO's origins, his priorities this summer, and the affordability issues facing would-be homeowners.

 

Where did the idea for ALCUBO come from?

The idea for ALCUBO originated 1 year ago when I was looking to buy a house and I realized that, despite the fact that I was in a strong financial position, it was really difficult to access one.

Because of that, we started to work on finding a solution for people in a similar situation. After six months of developing the idea, analysing the market and dedicating countless hours to learning from key real estate figures, we were able to shape a 360 proptech where young people can A) buy without paying a deposit, B) sell their homes using our profitable model or, C) invest in homes on behalf of our clients.

 

What problem does ALCUBO solve?

Purchasing a property in Spain is currently a highly concerning issue and young people are the most vulnerable, particularly those paying exorbitant rent without having the capacity to save the necessary funds required for a mortgage.

This is the problem we want to solve with ALCUBO.

 

What is ALCUBO's USP?

I believe that we are a very competitive company for all stakeholders:

The value proposition for our end customer—young people who agree to participate in a lease-to-purchase model—is that we do not ask for abusive down payments; if the issue is the initial capital expenditure, we aim to eliminate it from the equation.

For those selling their houses: they get a profit much faster and higher than if they sold it tomorrow.

And for investors, we only present them with opportunities that match their needs.

 

Alcubo Founders

 

How will ALCUBO generate income?

ALCUBO invoices for each transaction we facilitate. When we provide an opportunity, we charge a fee to investors. Additionally, when we make a successful match, we also receive a fee.

 

How does the ALCUBO lease-to-own product work for prospective owners?

Our goal is to be a competitive model company, first of all. We do not charge an entry commission, so prospective owners begin by paying the monthly rent where 70% covers the rental payment, with the final 30% representing going towards the mortgage/loan.

 

How is the company financed? Will you be raising funds in the near future?

The company is currently sustained by the investment from the founding partners and the revenue we are generating. To accelerate our growth, we plan to start a fundraising round with business angels in Q4 2023.

 

Where will you focus your resources in your first summer in business?

We are focusing on technology and expanding the team. We aim to onboard 10 profiles in the near future.

 

You have produced figures that outline how only 16% of people aged 23-35 can afford a mortgage. How many more young people will be able to own a home through platforms such as ALCUBO in the next three to five years?

In the first year, we project to assist 130 young individuals and families in achieving their goals. From there, we are projecting a three-fold growth over the next five years.

 

The iBuying space in Spain includes names like Kodit, Clikalia, Tiko and Casavo; meanwhile, you are bringing a lease-to-own product to the market. How else do you see property transactions and ownership options changing in the near future?

The past three months have seen fewer property sales, and experts are already talking about a price adjustment.

I think it's a great moment to be creative. Recently, I read about a company that sells rooms directly. Despite the real estate market being crowded with players, I still believe it holds a lot of possibilities. Like in any crisis, I think it's crucial to be highly creative, and new alternatives will continue to emerge to meet all market needs.

 

What should the real estate industry be talking about that it's not talking about?

I believe we should drive innovation in the sector and bring more visibility to the new solutions being offered. It seems that there isn't enough discussion about this. We are focusing too much on informing about the problem and not putting enough emphasis on the solutions. Hopefully, all newly established companies like ours will have the opportunity to showcase their solutions in the media. The market is vast, and there is room for new alternatives.

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June 21, 2023
Harvey is an experienced property journalist and copywriter. He has written about the property industry since 2015, starting at The Property Franchise Group in the UK, before moving to Spain to work for Spotahome. He has blogged for the private rented sector, ghostwritten for UK property experts and written case studies for franchise owners around the UK. Harvey joined Online Marketplaces as a News Editor in 2022.

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