‘It’s going to be millions’ – BuildDirect launches new platform, boosts product offerings

Home Marketplace launches Wednesday

BuildDirect CEO Jeff Booth

After raising $50 million in venture capital in December 2014, BuildDirect CEO Jeff Booth was determined to rapidly expand funding for new technology at his Vancouver tech firm.

More than a year later, Home Marketplace launched Wednesday (February 10) and Booth said the potential for the community-based technology platform is enormous.

BuildDirect – the so-called Amazon (Nasdaq:AMZN) of home-building products – will allow third parties to access the new platform to directly connect buyers to suppliers and manufacturers.

Meanwhile, its technology is offering data to help users to pinpoint where demand is coming from for products. This in turn cuts down costs and removes headaches in the supply chain, according to Booth.

While many of the products are shipped directly manufacturers to customers, BuildDirect also has a network of eight warehouses throughout North America from which it also ships items.

And Booth said BuildDirect has increased its number of available products from 6,000 to 8,600 since September.

“In the next year and years, it’s going to be millions,” he said.

“What’s that telling us is both suppliers and customers are desperate for a more fair, more simple marketplace.”

Since its founding in 1999, BuildDirect has raised $110 million in financing to bring its valuation to $500 million.

Its workforce has nearly doubled over the past two years, growing from 175 workers in January 2014 to its present headcount of more than 300. After the company raised $30 million in January 2014, Booth said the plan was to eventually grow the roster to nearly 500.