Liz Gannes

Recent Posts by Liz Gannes

Homejoy Raises $38M to Bring $20/Hour Home Cleaning to the Masses

Today’s technology industry is obsessed with applying convenience and efficiency to life’s daily drags and annoyances. So what else can be booked on a website to arrive at your door a day later?

Now it’s home cleaners, at a flat rate of $20 per hour, facilitated by Homejoy, a year-and-a-half-old service that’s now live in 31 cities in the U.S. and Canada.


Shutterstock/Craig Wactor

Venture capitalists like Homejoy. They really like it. The startup has now raised a couple of rounds of funding, in the kind of quick succession that’s meant to turn heads. The Series A and B rounds amount to $38 million from Google Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, Max Levchin, First Round Capital, Oliver Jung and Mike Hirshland.

Founded last year, the San Francisco-based company has now raised a total of $40 million.

The secret to Homejoy’s quick success, according to CEO Adora Cheung (who declined to say how many people use the service) is that she and all her team go through professional cleaning training, so they are deeply familiar with the work they facilitate.

The company now provides full-time work for more than 1,000 people, she said. It pays them $15 per hour.

The most remarkable stat that Cheung supplied is that more than half of Homejoy’s customers say they have never had their homes professionally cleaned before. It seems that the ease of use of 24-hour advance-booking online is opening the cleaning market to new audiences.

Next up for Homejoy, Cheung said, is expansion to more cities, and to more home services, like repairs and maintenance.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work