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Plancraft receives seed funding to digitize the craft industry

Photo: Plancraft’s foun­ding team: from left to right. Alex­an­der Noll, Julian Wieden­haus and Richard Keil (Image: Plancraft)
7. Septem­ber 2022

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

About 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.

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