Inspiring women: Gemma Young
Having seen that the property industry was riddled with problems, Young has created an internet-based solution which investors are buying into…
Name: Gemma Young
Founded: Settled in 2016
Start-up elevator pitch: An online property platform empowering homeowners to buy and sell with more autonomy.
Funding raised: £2.2m
Follow her: @Gemmalucy
Who is Gemma Young?
The early stages of Young’s career were spent in estate agencies, where she saw “under the hood” of the industry and became familiar with the traditional model for buying and selling property – and all the flaws that come with it.
A complete change in career path later saw her gain a position at Google after developing an interest in working with the internet; a sector that was only just emerging at the time. However, she still found herself surrounded by the strains of the troublesome property industry as friends and family members struggled to navigate buying and selling homes.
It was seeing this that inspired her, along with her co-founder and brother Paul Young – who had also previously worked in estate agencies before moving to a large advertising agency – to combine their experience in digital and online platforms with their past knowledge of the real estate world to create Settled.
How has she won over investors?
Reimagining “how property transactions should look for this generation”, Settled is a unique proposition which moves the consumer journey online, meaning homeowners don’t have to be dependent on the middle man.
Now, the platform has sold £250m worth of homes, saving users over £5m in estate agency fees.
Thanks to this success, fuelled by its refreshing philosophy of “liberated selling and buying”, the business has attracted a total of £2.2m from investors including Silicon Valley VC, 500 Startups, Connect Ventures and Piton Capital.
On securing investment as a woman in business, Young advises building a supportive network:
“Go to events where other founders are, attend seminars on funding, find people on LinkedIn and make connections. I've found that being around other founders is a huge source of energy and importantly, other founders tend to be amazingly collaborative and can help you along your way.”