News & Analysis

Startup Oneflare acquires 40,000-member-strong online renovations forum

- July 22, 2014 2 MIN READ

Online home services marketplace Oneflare has just announced its acquisition of Renovate Forum, an online renovation community home to over 40,000 members.

Renovate Forum is one of the most popular forums in Australia for renovators seeking advice and expert opinion on home improvement projects. The free forum generates over 500,000 visits every month, and contains hundreds of threads with questions, ideas, inspiration, and common mistakes.

At the moment, Oneflare simply connects Australians with over 45,000 certified tradespeople – e.g. cleaners, electricians, plumbers, removalists, pest controllers, painters, accountants, renovators, landscapers, gardeners and more. The strategic acquisition of a forum, especially one that aligns with the interests and values of Oneflare, not only means 40,000+ potential new customers, but also allows the startup to fill what is missing in its offering: conversation.

In a media release, Marcus Lim, Co-Founder and CEO of Oneflare, said: “Renovate Forum taps into the same industry as Oneflare, but in a completely different way. It complements what we are currently doing and enriches the experience of users of both sites.”

“Oneflare is all about connecting customers with home services businesses. Renovate Forum takes our model one step further by allowing and encouraging our customers to start conversations with each other. In the past, we have lacked the social community aspect to our site. Today’s announcement enriches the experience of users of both sites.”

There is a lot of potential when you consider the impact of this acquisition. For members of Renovate Forum, Oneflare becomes ‘top of mind’. For Oneflare and the tradespeople on the platform, the forum can be used to monitor what people are talking about; and the information in turn can be used to plan out strategic marketing exercises.

Tradespeople are also able to stand out of the crowd and subtly market themselves by joining in discussions and providing expert opinion. Lim said, “Tradies also have free access to Renovate Forum and can easily jump into any conversation with their professional opinion and advice.”

Around this time last year, $17 million worth of jobs had been requested on Oneflare. Today, it’s $50 million worth. It will be interesting to see where they’re at next year. 

Update: Although the exact dollar value of the acquisition was not revealed, we’ve been informed that it was a six-figure deal.