Oisin Hanrahan’s Handy raises a further US$15m, appoints ex-Tumblr tech chief as CTO

31 Mar 2015

Irishman Oisin Hanrahan’s New York start-up Handy has raised US$15m in new funding and has appointed Tumblr’s former head of engineering Kenneth Little as its new CTO.

Handy, formerly known as Handybook, is a kind of Hailo for handyman services like housekeeping, painting, plumbing and more.

Hanrahan set the company up while studying at Harvard where he met co-founder Umang Dua. The other co-founders of Handybook are Weina Scott and Ignacio Leonhardt.

The latest investment of US$15m from TPG Partners brings to US$64m the total amount of funding raised so far by Handy, including US$30m last year from Steve Case’s Revolution Growth. Earlier investors in Handy include General Catalyst Partners and Highland Capital Partners.

The funds will allow Handy to continue to build its core team and operations efforts throughout its 28 cities to enhance its user experience for professionals and customers around the world.

“We are excited to back Oisin Hanrahan, Umang Dua and the excellent management team that they are assembling at Handy, as well as join the group of world-class investors who are already investing in the Company,” said Ransom Langford, Partner at TPG Growth.

“The company is quickly becoming the trusted resource for on-demand services for the home, while attracting a reliable and growing group of professionals.”


Oisin Hanrahan, founder and CEO, Handy

As the new CTO Kenneth Little will oversee the expansion of the company’s engineering team and overall product expansion.

Previously, he served as the senior vice president of Engineering at Tumblr, working with both the frontend and backend teams to build out the next generation of high scalability infrastructure.

During his three years with the company he successfully grew the team from 20 people to more than 100. Prior to Tumblr, Little was the director of Engineering for Etsy, where he led the implementation of shared data architecture.

He also served as director of Frontend Technologies for The New York Times, in charge of spearheading advanced content delivery initiatives such as SEO enhancements and speed optimisations and overseeing the development of the publication’s mobile initiatives.

“I’ve been fortunate to have spent my career working with companies that are at the forefront of digital media and e-commerce,” said Little.

“What I’m most passionate about is technology that provides seamless and innovative solutions to improve the daily lives of consumers, and Handy does exactly that. Our goal is simple: to grow a simple, efficient platform where people can get their homes in order.

As well as appointing a new CTO, Handy has also appointed seasoned lawyer Brian Miller as general counsel. Miller previously served as counsel for MediaMath, EducationDynamics and LivePerson and also serves as pro bono counsel for MOUSE, a New York-based non-profit focused on youth development through technology.

 “We’re excited to continue investing in the Handy platform to deliver the best experience for our hundreds of thousands of customers and the most flexible way of earning for our thousands of professionals” said CEO and co-founder, Oisin Hanrahan

“Strengthening our leadership team allows us to increase our focus on the core mobile prod
uct and service experience. Over the next 12 months we intend to 4x our customer base and drive the majority of our customers to the Handy mobile experience,” added COO and co-founder, Umang Dua.

Handyman image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years