On-demand valet parking app Luxe has raised a $US20 million Series A round of funding, the company announced Tuesday.
The new round of funding, which supplements the $US5.5 million seed round Luxe raised in October, was led by investors Redpoint Ventures and Venrock. Ryan Sarver of Redpoint and Brian Ascher of Venrock will join Luxe’s Board of Directors.
Luxe co-founder and CEO Curtis Lee first got the idea for his valet parking app while he was running late for a dinner reservation looking for a parking spot in San Francisco — a city notorious for its lack of parking.
Lee and his then-girlfriend (now-wife) circled the block for half an hour and almost missed their reservation. Lee was so angry, he started sketching out early ideas for the company right there at the restaurant.
Here’s how Luxe works.
Before you leave your house, you plug in the address you’re going to. The app tracks you as you make your way to your destination, and about 10 minutes before you get there, it matches you with a Luxe valet attendant.
Dressed in a bright blue jacket, your attendant meets you at your destination, hops into your car, and asks when you’ll need it back and if you want them to run your car through a car wash or to fill your tank up with gas. Then they take your car to one of several lots in the city that Luxe has struck deals with.
Ten minutes before you’re ready to leave, you use the app to request the valet to bring your car wherever you are. The most surprising thing about the app is that it costs $US5 an hour, or $US15 a day. Parking in urban areas is typically much more expensive.
The Series A funding will be used to expand Luxe’s services, which were previously available only in Los Angeles and San Francisco, to new cities including Chicago, Boston, and Seattle by April, Lee said.
In the coming weeks, Luxe will start recruiting new valets and opening private beta access for users in those cities.
Lee also says Luxe has seen 90% month-over-month customer growth and 97% transactional growth since Luxe’s launch in San Francisco and Los Angeles in October. According to Luxe, the average customer uses the service twice a week.
Along with the new infusion of money, Luxe also announced Tuesday it will be launching an Android app.
“The fact is, 90% of Americans have to drive to work or to daily appointments like visiting the doctor, and in major metropolitan areas parking costs have continued to rise as inventory in parking garages is reduced,” Lee explained. “Luxe’s model, where we bring a breakthrough business model together with the latest mobile technology creates efficiencies and cost savings for consumers.”