This IPitch guest article was kindly supplied by Tane Clark of Half Price.
Ideas are born out of necessity, but when Adi Tatarko and Alon Cohen came up with the idea for Houzz, they could have never predicted that the platform would now be home to 40 million users.
The husband and wife team created the idea for Houzz when they were struggling to gain inspiration when redesigning their home. In February 2009, Houzz was launched, and its growth since then has been staggering.
The team has made excellent use of the funding they received and it makes a good lesson for anyone with a start-up business. When Houzz received a $2 million investment in November 2010 it was vital that they made careful use of the money. If they’d had no concrete plan in place, as to how they were going to use that money to grow the business, they may not have received the additional funding soon after. A year later, they received an additional $11.6 million in financing, and in January 2013 a further $35 million.
While of course most start-ups will never be dealing with such large amounts, it’s still a good lesson in how efficient use of funds is vital. It’s important that every penny you spend is used as efficiently as possible, as too much waste may well result in a business failing.
Stories like Houzz should make you excited about start-ups and will hopefully make you believe that anything is possible. In truth, Houzz isn’t anything revolutionary, but more so a simple idea, executed with devastating effect. Start-ups don’t always have to reinvent the wheel, but rather focus on areas within the wheel, yet to be exploited. Adi & Alon now have a combined net worth of $500 million. It really is the stuff dreams are made of and Houzz’s growth shows no signs of slowing down. With new markets in the UK, Australia, Germany, France, amongst others – the sky really is the limit for Houzz.
Check out the above infographic from Half Price for more information on how a simple start-up business that started at a kitchen table became one of the most popular websites in the world.