Emerging startup Heroic has won over a syndicate of local angel investors who are leading a first round of funding for the “e-harmony of home services” consumer play from Minneapolis.
While many pre-revenue ventures may overextend their energies wrestling with first money buy-in, often taking whatever they can get, CEO and co founder Justin Barrett says Heroic’s biggest question is “Whether our initial $600k seed round is even high enough?”
“There’s a strong appetite given the the market size, our unique model, and the credibility of our lead investors. We’re on to something big, which is validated in part by how fast the conversations are accelerating and spreading to networks around the country.”
Initially conceived last June by Barrett and partner Dan Linstroth, Heroic is entering the vast ‘service provider marketplace’ dominated by incumbents like Craigslist or Angie’s List and joined by newer upstarts Task Rabbit ($25m raised) and Zaarly ($15m raised); innumerable other imitators all proclaim their unique twist.
“We want to own the home,” he says. “In and around the home is our initial target market and providing another level of transparency through our ‘Hero Match Algorithm’ is our primary differentiator. There’s still a big nut to crack in terms of trust in all these marketplaces, and I believe that if Heroic can solve that pain point better than anyone else, the rest will take care of itself. There is a difference between someone you would randomly come across on the Internet and a certified ‘Hero’.”
Still considered alpha stage in terms of production and customer acquisition, Heroic will be applying their first round, which “could oversubscribe into the millions,” towards building their supply side base into the tens of thousands throughout three initial US markets — Minneapolis, Denver, and Chicago. From there, sights are already set on a larger series A round that would fund expansion into another five markets.
After talking through the plan in greater detail, probing and pressing, it’s clear that Barrett and crew have put considerable thought into their go to market strategy and subsequent revenue model, much of which Barrett declined to talk about on the record due to obvious competitive reasons.
“We have an unstoppable attitude towards success and are fortunate enough to have lead money from local investors who are as excited as we are about this bullet train,” Barrett concludes.