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Tradie booking platform raises an additional $6 million, plans to nail the on-demand space

Tuesday, 2 June 2015 | By Broede Carmody

Tradie booking platform hipages has snapped up an additional $6 million in funding to fuel further growth and improve its online platform.


The latest capital injection was led by existing investor Ellerston Capital – the fund set up by the Packer family – as well as Right Click Capital, Australian Ethical Investments and new investor Kestrel Capital.


The round follows a $6 million raise last year, meaning the startup has scooped up $12 million in equity financing in just over 12 months.


Hipages specialises in connecting users with trade professionals and has been operating for more than 11 years.


Co-founder and chief executive David Vitek told StartupSmart the latest round was a testament to the hunger for on-demand services in Australia.


“We had a great year last year and now we’re looking to keep pushing forward,” he says.


“This time what we’re looking at is working on diving deeper into the market. We see a big opportunity in moving towards an on demand experience for finding tradespeople and home services.”


Vitek says this round will also allow the platform to amplify its growth by improving the website’s mobile optimisation.


“We’re starting to see people do the process [of booking a tradesperson] on the go and when they’re out and about,” he says.


“So we’re looking to deliver that on-demand experience so that when you post a job on hipages the next thing that happens is you’re chatting to a tradesperson on the app instantly. We fund most of our growth… this was about allowing us to push further to grow the development team significantly larger than we otherwise could as well as to work through the branding and marketing to get the messaging out there.”


As for whether an international expansion is on the cards, Vitek says the focus for the moment is on getting the product right in Australia.


“At this stage our focus is on the Australian market… we think it is a massive market and we want to get that right here first.”


Hipages says it has processed more than $1.35 billion worth of jobs in the past 12 months. Last year the business’s revenue was growing at 30% per annum.


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