More and more Australian consumers are turning to digital for their home improvements. According to News Corp-backed startup, Hipages, two million people have used their mobile app to hire a tradesperson, generating $2.4 billion worth of job value this year.

The company announced a 37 per cent year-on-year growth based on FY17 results, totaling $37 million in annual revenue.

The uptake in users has coincided with a “booming” home improvement market in Australia, with $140 billion spent in the past year, the company said.

The Hipages app provides a platform for consumers to connect with and offer jobs to qualified tradespersons. Trade jobs requests increased 19 per cent over the last year with almost 1.2 million jobs logged.

Hipages has added 36 per cent more staff to keep up with their growth. New senior appointments include former CBA senior marketer, Stuart Tucker, as Hipages’ chief customer officer.

The business has also appointed Jonathan Harrison to the role of VP, Product, and Jim Matheson to the role of VP, Growth & Marketing.

The Hipages app

The popularity of the digital platform suggests consumers are overcoming any barriers regarding hiring a tradie sight unseen.

“Australians need peace of mind when hiring a tradesperson via a digital platform – they need to feel confident and comfortable that they’ve booked a tradesperson who is highly qualified and professional,” said Hipages CEO and cofounder, David Vitek.

“We’re dedicated to helping registered tradespeople build their businesses, as well as committed to connecting more Aussie homeowners with trustworthy, qualified tradespeople.”

For many home improvers Hipages and their 110,00 registered tradies is the go to app. Hipages has been downloaded 540,00 times to date with downloads growing at 126 per cent year-on-year, according to the company.

Earlier this year News Corp has upped their stake in Hipages from 25 to 30 per cent following an initial investment in late 2015.

“In this time, the business has invested heavily in product development, including significant innovations in the platform for consumers and tradespeople, talent and marketing,” a company statement said.

“We’re extremely happy with our solid growth results year-on-year, and have significantly added staff headcount in tandem to maintain our premium level of service. Coupled with continued product and service innovations, it’s all combining to set us up for further growth and expansion,” said Vitek.

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