In France, as in many countries, the housing crisis is especially impacting students. About 150 000 rooms are currently missing, in the country only. The offer is optimized for investors, not for students’ comfort and experience. But things are changing, and Roof will lead the revolution.
Roof is building an European brand of coliving for students. Their asset-light proptech model consists in renting buildings for 8-12 years, renovating them to create an unique environment, and renting rooms to students starting at 500 €/month (all inclusive) – and even less for students with scholarships. Roof focuses on the student experience and the creation of a lifestyle brand, to ensure maximum retention rates and positive word-of-mouth.
How do they do so? Thanks to digital onboarding, digital keys, services, community events, quality furniture, shared gardens, common tables… In sum, everything that’s the current offering is lacking, while creating a positive environment for students to socialize and connect with each other – something the pandemics made even more necessary.
If you’re familiar with XAnge 99% thesis (if not, read this), you’ve already got it: Roof was a perfect fit for us. Over the past years, students have been through difficult years. Mental health disorders and pauperization are rising and they deserve to be taken care of. That’s a challenge Roof’s founders are clearly aware of: they even made it part of their mission.
They will also be very careful about social diversity and prices within their spaces, to ensure they are not building yet another luxury accommodation service for CSP+ students, but a mass-market solution to a global problem. Roof is truly for the 99%.
In addition, we’ve rarely met such a complementary team of founders: Oussama Bourhaleb, former Head of Wilco Proptech Accelerator, Tarik Fatihi, Former CMO of Heetch, Cheerz and Nickel, and Nicolas Leroy, Former COO of Agilité Solutions, a company that, for instance, worked on retrofitting buildings during WeWork implementation in France.
Roof will focus first on four massively undersupplied cities in France: Lille, Valenciennes, Rouen, Amiens, Le Havre.. They plan to open their first residence by the start of the next student year. Yes, they want to go very fast! But thanks to the industrialization of the design and work processes, Roof will be able to welcome students 99 days after starting a new project.
This opening will be only a first step, since the founders are aiming big. In six years time, Roof wants to be the European leader of the student housing market. Go!