Plancraft receives seed funding to digitize the craft industry
Hamburg — Software-as-a-service start-up Plancraft receives €1.9 million from institutional investors and €200,000 in funding in its seed financing round. The Hamburg-based trio of founders is thus firing up the marketing of its invoicing software, which is geared towards simplicity, in the craft market, which has been little digitalized to date. The vision behind Plancraft is getting closer: to create the basis for businesses to be economically successful.
Enormous potential in construction and crafts
In Germany, around 500,000 craft enterprises work in the construction and finishing trades*. A large part is equipped with IT solutions that technologically date from the last three decades. Skills shortages and demographic change are increasing the pressure on companies to become more efficient. In his father’s carpentry shop near Hamburg, founder and inventor Alexander Noll experienced first-hand which fundamental processes are crucial and where craftsmen lose valuable time.
“When a quote takes several hours to complete, people in the plants suffer tremendous stress and can’t focus on their craft,” said Alexander Noll, co-founder of Plancraft.
Funding to enable scaling
With a web application for office work that is designed for user-friendliness, Plancraft is now bringing a breath of fresh air to the trade, which is not very digital in places. To actively shape the digital transformation of the industry, the Plancraft team now secured €1.9 million in seed funding, following initial federal funding in 2020 and an angel investment in 2021.
“A very motivated team, a simple product that is also in demand by customers, and a potentially gigantic market convinced us. Plancraft has prepared the scaling and we are happy to be on board, explains Louis Heinz”, Senior Investment Manager at High-Tech Gründerfonds.
In addition to existing investors and HTGF, three other VC companies invested: BitStone Capital, XDECK and realPACE. The Hamburger Investitions und Förderbank is funding the innovative start-up with a further 200,000 euros as part of the InnoFinTech funding program.
Modern technologies for contemporary work
In times of greater networking and new work culture, the need for flexible and decentralized working is growing. The Plancraft team’s approach focuses firstly on reducing the technical burden for the chronically overloaded target group. By eliminating the need for initial installation or manual updates, new technological foundations are created in operations thanks to the cloud. Secondly, users can work on their preferred devices, whether tablet computer, Apple laptop or smartphone.
“We all depend on the skilled trades, today and especially in a low-carbon future. With the help of the new capital, our team can now provide the thousands of small businesses with a modern tool,” explains Julian Wiedenhaus, co-founder and CEO of Plancraft
Plancraft allows craftspeople to focus on what they love. With apps designed for user-friendliness, Plancraft makes office work easier and saves valuable working time when calculating quotations, writing invoices or communicating with employees. The cloud-based app impresses small craft businesses with unprecedented performance and is the only tool fully optimized for use on tablet devices. With a starting price of 29 euros per month, large investments in IT are a thing of the past, thereby supporting the urgently needed start-up culture in the skilled trades. Back in 2019, the three founders Alexander Noll, Richard Keil and Julian Wiedenhaus found each other. In the meantime, around 16 employees at Plancraft GmbH are pursuing the common mission: “Less office. More craftsmanship.” www.plancraft.de
About BitStone Capital
BitStone Capital is a venture capital investor focused on innovative and sustainable technology companies in the construction and real estate industries. Beyond financing, BitStone Capital catalyzes the growth of its real estate and construction tech portfolio companies with its extensive network, unique industry knowledge and access, and specific expertise in emerging technologies. With its investments, BitStone Capital aims to contribute to the sustainable and future-oriented transformation of the construction and real estate industry.
About real Pace
real PACE is an independent investor and company builder focused on the construction and real estate industries, investing from a deep understanding of the market. Focuses on innovative and disruptive technology companies, scalable business models, and teams that are changing the industry for the long term. real PACE market understanding and network are based on a team that combines founder experience with relevant industry expertise and success-critical professional skills. With its own market intelligence team, real PACE supports portfolio companies sustainably and provides access to a broad network of powerful partners.
About High-Tech Gründerfonds
The seed investor High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF) finances technology start-ups with growth potential. With a volume of around EUR 900 million spread across three funds and an international partner network, HTGF has supported more than 670 start-ups since 2005. With the launch of HTGF IV, more than EUR 400 million in fund volume will be added in the fall of 2022. The team of experienced investment managers and start-up experts supports the young companies with know-how, entrepreneurial spirit and passion. The focus is on high-tech start-ups in the fields of digital tech, industrial tech, life sciences, chemistry and related business areas. More than €4 billion in capital has been invested in the HTGF portfolio by external investors in more than 1,900 follow-on financing rounds to date. In addition, the fund has already successfully sold shares in more than 160 companies.
The fund investors in the public-private partnership include the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Protection, KfW Capital, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and numerous companies from a wide range of industries.