Homejoy, the U.S. domestic cleaning startup that’s backed by the likes of Google Ventures to the tune of $38 million, is putting another of its international operations on hold. Following news earlier today that its Canada-based business is being “paused,” TechCrunch has learned that Homejoy’s activities in France have been met with the same fate.
A spokesperson told me that what this means in practice is that the company is no longer accepting bookings in France, while — in a line similar to the one given regarding Canada — it’s maintaining relationships with the cleaners locally who were signed up to its platform, for when (or if?) Homejoy re-enters France. Relationships, of course, can’t be put on hold forever, and it would seem inevitable that those cleaners will now be looking for work elsewhere.
Meanwhile, the company is keen to stress that it remains active in Europe — specifically, that it is choosing to focus on Germany, where Berlin will now act as its European customer service “hub,” and the UK where it currently has operations in London. It’s also recently added Munich to its German presence, which also includes Hamburg.
What’s interesting about Homejoy’s “pausing” of operations in Canada and France is that it recently saw a new and potentially formidable competitor in the form of Rocket Internet’s Helpling, which has recently launched its domestic cleaning service in both countries. Paris in particular looks to be heating up as a battleground.
Alongside Helpling, there’s UK-headquartered and Accel-backed Hassle, which actually expanded to the French capital city before the Rocket Internet startup made its way across the border. Both companies will probably be glad to see the back of Homejoy, at least for now.
You know what they say, if you can’t stand the heat…