Proptech ‘Sugar’ start-up raises $ 2.5 million to transform apartment buildings into interactive communities


During the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, proptech startup Sugar Living helped improve the home quarantine experience for those stuck inside.

Today, the Los Angeles-based startup announced it has raised $ 2.5 million in seed funding to expand and connect people in their residential communities with its visionary technology. The round table was supported by a multitude of investors, including the CEO of SquareFoot Jonathan Wasserstrum, Ben Zises, Diran Otegbade, Oleksiy Ignatiev and member of the board of directors of Zillow Claire Cormier Thielke.

Founder of Sugar Fatima Dicko got the idea last year when she saw an opportunity to enable people living in apartments and residential communities to engage with each other in a safe and effective way. Dicko has partnered with real estate groups and property management companies to create an app for those who may feel isolated and disconnected during the pandemic.

Fatima Dicko (Twitter)

“Most residential applications are clunky, outdated and difficult to use. Tasks as simple as paying the rent, communicating with your property manager or unlocking the doors are cumbersome and tedious, ”Dicko told TechCrunch.

Sugar’s app not only connects people in an apartment complex or residential area, it also allows users to unlock doors without keys, schedule maintenance appointments, and pay rent. Sugar has grown to serve clients around the world, including residential communities of varying sizes, real estate investment groups, Airbnb rentals, hotels, and other types of residential properties.

The application is available in two Components. One is a mobile app for apartments and building residents and the other is a web-based dashboard for building owners and managers. Property managers also have access to the management dashboard to track online appraisals and reviews of properties within their portfolios. Sugar is now working on 90 day pilots with several large property management companies.

Black women in the tech industry are pushing for more entrepreneurship in the industry. Although access to capital is still an obstacle, this round table for sugar could represent a change in this dynamic.

“As a black founder who immigrated to the United States from Mali at a young age, it’s incredibly energizing and humbling at the same time,” Dicko told AfroTech. “Having this level of support reinforces the idea that it honestly takes a village to get closer to our goals. My father is a big fan of the proverb ‘If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. I truly believe this could not be truer in the world of entrepreneurship.

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