ShearShare, the largest provider of on-demand salon and barbershop space rentals worldwide, closed $2.3 million in seed funding.
WHO: ShearShare provides a machine learning-enabled marketplace that allows salon and barbershop owners to rent their excess suites and booths to licensed cosmetologists and barbers by the day. Launched in early 2017, ShearShare currently serves industry professionals in more than 625 cities and 11 countries.
WHY: The latest round will fund product development, invest in marketing, and grow the now 16-person ShearShare team. Funds will also be used to equip industry professionals with the necessary B2B tools to function in a post-pandemic society.
IN THEIR OWN WORDS: “Stylists are re-imagining how, when, and where they work,” says Dr. Tye Caldwell, co-founder & CEO of ShearShare. “As the second largest industry for freelancers turns its attention to a new operating normal, many beauty and barbering professionals are taking time to revisit their priorities, including how to better manage operating costs, maximize revenue per days worked, and access professional workspace on-demand. Yes, our industry has been hit hard, but 71% of stylists fully expect to recover within a year. Our platform helps them accelerate that economic mobility.”
“We are proud to invest in ShearShare’s incredible team and the vision behind it. We have worked with Courtney and Dr. Tye for years and can’t imagine a better case of founder-market fit; they are transforming the beauty industry and are emerging from the COVID-19 crisis as true thought leaders in this space, working to enable independent stylists around the world to build their own entrepreneurial businesses on top of ShearShare’s scalable tech platform,” says Mary Grove, Managing Partner at Bread and Butter Ventures.
ShearShare co-founder & COO Courtney Caldwell adds, “When we surveyed more than 7,300 stylists, we discovered that 76% plan to utilize daily booth rental post-COVID, with a full 63% of industry professionals expecting to grow at least 25% in the next 3-5 years. That’s no surprise to us, because having been in the industry for three decades, we know that beauty bounces back. At the height of the 2008 recession, the number of mom-and-pop hair salons actually increased by nearly 10%. Our platform finally gives the owner and the stylist an opportunity to build their small businesses on their terms while also maximizing their earnings potential.”
- ShearShare closed $2.3 million in seed funding, bringing the total amount raised to $3.4 million.
- Existing investors Precursor Ventures, Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund, Structure Capital, Backstage Capital, and 500 Startups participated, alongside new participants Bread and Butter Ventures, ArlanWasHere Investments (Arlan Hamilton’s fund in which Mark Cuban is the sole LP), Lightspeed Venture Partners Scouts Program (Veronica Juarez and Jason McBride), Jaylon Smith of the Dallas Cowboys (Minority Entrepreneurship Institute), Thaddeus Young of the Chicago Bulls (Reform Ventures), Bumble Fund, Notley Ventures, Sachse Family Fund, and other global investors.
- Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, ShearShare has experienced a 157% increase in users over the past few months.
Photo: Markus Winkler via Unsplash