Former CEO of JustEat Backs Rising StarOfService
Klaus Nyengaard, the former CEO of JustEat, has thrown his weight behind local services marketplace StarOfService (www.starofservice.com). Nyengaard has been appointed Head of Advisory Board, and joins the founders of BlaBlaCar as a fellow investor in the French start-up as it embarks on an ambitious global expansion.
StarOfService helps consumers to find local services to meet their specific needs, including more niche ones like photographers, language teachers or DJs. It has been growing at 600% year-on-year since it was founded two years ago and is the biggest marketplace of its kind in France; more than 100,000 requests are made through the site, and around 10,000 new businesses signing up, each month.
The company is now looking to stamp its mark on new territories in the next six-months including India (www.starofservice.in), Turkey (www.starofservice.web.tr), Australia (www.starofservice.com.au) and Canada (www.starofservice.ca). It is also hoping to have a UK sales and support team in place in London in the next two weeks (www.starofservice.co.uk).
Nyengaard, who led JustEat for five years and laid the groundwork for its eventual £1.5 billion flotation, said: “The unit economics in terms of customer visits and subsequent conversion rates for the site is unprecedented. But what’s really exciting is the next phase.
“While France has provided all that growth and momentum to date, the first data from other embryonic target markets, like the UK, suggests the potential for growth elsewhere is even bigger than in France,” he adds.
“We’ve reached a tipping point in the local services space and I’m convinced someone is rapidly going to take the global lead in this huge marketplace, estimated to be worth $400bn. We are going to ensure that the frontrunner is StarOfService.”
Lucas Lambertini, co-founder and CEO of StarOfService, said: “We are glad to welcome Klaus on-board. He brings with him a wealth of experience in high-growth marketplace businesses as we look to accelerate our plans in France and beyond.
“We have set ourselves very ambitious and aggressive targets, and are confident in achieving those. Our figures show we’re growing almost ten times faster than Thumbtack, the biggest local service marketplace out there right now, recently valued at $1.38bn, but it caters solely for the USA market.
“Our goal is to roll out across 80 countries and become the leading global provider of local services within the next two years. We want to be the Uber of local services,” he says.
StarOfService has raised €1.5m in two funding rounds to date. Investors include BlaBlaCar founders Frédéric Mazzella and Francis Nappez; former eBay and mobile.de executive Ralph Werner; former CEO of Fotolia Oleg Tscheltzoff, plus Point 3 Capital and Kima Ventures. A new Series A funding round is in the pipeline.
The company already has an established presence in key markets such as Italy (www.starofservice.it), Spain (www.starofservice.es), Germany (www.starofservice.de), Brazil (www.starofservice.com.br) and Russia (www.starofservice.ru).
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