Handybook spun out of Harvard’s Innovation Lab earlier this year and is a platform to allow users to instantly book professional home services, like handymen and cleaners, online. Today it has confirmed over $2 million of investment from VCs including Highland Capital Partners and General Catalyst. “If Taskrabbit is like Lyft or Zimride then we are like Uber.” That at least is the pitch of Handybook CEO, Oisin Hanrahan.
Importantly, it’s never peer-to-peer – only professionals are contacted for a fixed price and with instant confirmation. Because they can instantly confirm the availability of the service professionals they can complete the whole transaction in about 90 seconds.
This, time guarantees, fixed pricing and satisfaction guarantees, means they can change the user experience from requesting bids or proposals to instant booking.
Indeed, the traction they got right out of the gate convinced both Hanrahan and his co-founder to drop out of Harvard Business School to build Handybook.
Hanrahan said: “The way people are forced to book and schedule home services every day just doesn’t work – it is really slow and clunky and requires so many phone calls, emails and text messages. We are drowning in technology that allows us to solve the problem of booking and scheduling services. Why aren’t we using it?”
So far they have 100 professional cleaners and handymen on the platform in New York and Boston and over the coming months will be adding even more capacity to the platform.