Today you’re officially one year old.
It took us a while to figure you out. Aaron (my brother,
your other founder) and I started over 3 years ago trying to build something,
anything, more than two people would use.
Instead, 2 years in, you were an accident. After many
sleepless nights of working on yet another “this-will-really-be-it” idea, Aaron decided to find a cleaner for his
unbearably dirty apartment. What was
supposed to save him time became a logistical nightmare of phone tag, expensive
price quotes, and scheduling fails.
We joked that we’d probably make more money cleaning. Pause.
What’s that phrase? Desperate times call for …
But perhaps what appeared to be a desperate measure evolved into an
opportunity. We had stumbled into a very old, inefficient and outdated industry.
After cleaning ourselves, we hacked together a site over a
weekend, convinced a couple cleaners to try our platform, and stood outside for
hours in the hot weather handing out promotional flyers in Mountain View,
California. On July 7th, 2012, we booked the first cleaning. Voila, you were
You grew really fast.
In the past 6 months you’ve launched into 20 cities. You’ve grown from 2 founders to over 60 employees and have matched over 500 independent service providers with opportunities. The first four offices weren’t big enough, so for your birthday, we moved into your fifth home.
You have a lot to improve.
Despite the successes, we still make mistakes. Over 95% of the time, we deliver an amazing experience for our clients and our service providers. But for those other times, it’s really painful. We need to and will fix everything sooner than later – our goal is to continually learn and improve every day.
You make a difference.
At your core, you solve people’s real problems: a wounded soldier who struggled to clean her place after a deployment but now enjoys the comfort of her own home as she recovers. An amazing young man with a promising college basketball career but an injury which forced a stop to his education. Things looked bleak with loan payments but having cleaned previously, he was quickly matched with opportunities through you. He’ll now be able to complete his bachelors and support his little brother.
You make me want to work everyday.
Your mission is simple: make homes a happier place to be. Whether it’s giving people back time by making homes more productive, providing opportunities to those who otherwise couldn’t find them, or the Homejoy team who volunteers with non-profits such as Habitat for Humanity -- I simply can’t think of anything more worthy to work for than you.
We should thank the village.
You wouldn’t be you if it weren’t for the time and dedication of many people.
We should first thank our investors, especially those who’ve
been with us since the very beginning. We should also thank American Express
and MasterCard for having glitchy systems that approved our credit cards. It
was just the right amount of debt we needed to see you take off.
Most importantly, we must thank all the hardworking, independent service providers that provide great, reliable cleanings everyday and the incredibly talented and tireless team who work on supporting the platform 24/7. It is because of them that you are so successful today.
Finally, happy birthday! We’ve been through a lot and you have grown beyond what I ever imagined. May the second year be even better than the first.
To happier homes everywhere,
Adora Cheung, Co-founder & CEO