Offering personalized interior design with high-quality furniture rental for Europe.
Changing the circulation of high-quality furniture to become truly sustainable and environmentally friendly – that’s exactly what rising startup Pabio is doing. The rent-to-own furniture tech startup is accomplishing their mission by continuously offering reused, renovated furniture of high quality. Customers receive a personalized interior design proposal with photorealistic renders of what their own home will look like when fully furnished. And soon Pabio will take it to the next level by adding virtual and augmented reality to their website.
Usually, when you start a business, you want someone by your side that you can fully trust. And who understands the way you think and complements that. Well, that’s exactly the opposite of how Pabio was founded. Anand needed the best possible strategic thinker that he could find to make a great success of his business idea. That’s where his co-founder Carlo Badini came in. Their paths crossed and they connected on LinkedIn. Wanting to combine their skills to the fullest, they set up Pabio – a company that offers personalized interior design with high-quality furniture rental for Europe.
If the customers like the photorealistic proposal, they can sign up to rent the furniture by paying a monthly subscription fee. Pabio even delivers and installs everything. Once the customer moves out, the company takes all the furniture back, renovates it, and relocates it to a new apartment at a discounted price. Co-founder Anand Chowdhary explains: “This way you can have really good furniture, even if you’re not living there for a long time or don’t want to pay the full price for the superb items straight away. We also recently launched pabio.com/explore, a fun new way to browse for furniture sets and design your virtual apartment. Without having to sign up yet.”
And their business idea isn’t the only innovative part of Pabio. The startup’s team works remotely throughout all of Europe. “These days, you don’t have to be in the same office to work together anymore. Which makes it easier to access anyone you need and add them to your team. You can hire the best employees from all over the world, without them having to move”. And to top it off, the co-founders didn’t meet in real life until one year after they set up Pabio.
A flying start
In December 2021, Pabio raised a $2.2 million seed round and launched in Germany. This brings their total funding to around $3.5 million, from top European and American investors, including Pioneer Fund, Y Combinator, SessionVC, TomahawkVC, and others. A great start to expand internationally. Anand: “We’ve already set up over 100 apartments in Switzerland and now our first few in Berlin as well. And we’re trying to expand to more cities in Europe.”
Within the last six months Pabio expanded their warehouses to one near Berlin and one near Bern in Switzerland. In the next few months, Pabio wants to add two more in Germany. But with their latest funding Pabio wants to take an even bigger approach. Anand and Carlo are investing heavily in vertical integration by setting up their own supply chain. That way they can smartly put the most picked items in their warehouse. “We’re using our data to find out which items we should pre-order. By the time you want to have it, we can make sure to deliver it the next day”. As entrepreneurial as they are, the founders are even ready to take the next big step and add virtual reality and artificial intelligence to their website. A lot to look forward to!
Starting a company in the Netherlands
In 2016 Anand founded his first startup. During his study Creative Technology BSc at the University of Twente, he got in touch with Novel-T. “I was the runner up at the UT Challenge with my previous startup, Oswald Labs. Mike Verkouter and the START team have always been very helpful with legal advice, business development help, and most recently sponsoring my startup visa. As a non-EU founder, it’s not very easy to set up a company in the Netherlands, especially with the requirements of a work visa. That’s why I’m really grateful for Novel-T’s help, because I love it here!”