Q&A with HomeSav founder and Co-CEO Alex Norman about building an ecommerce site for home furnishings and raising $1.2 million in seed funding
HomeSav is a members-only home furnishings ecommerce site. The Toronto–based company was founded in 2010 and recently raised $1.2 million in seed funding.
SUB: Please explain what HomeSav is, and the value proposition you offer to homeowners and consumers.
Norman: HomeSav.com is inspired living. HomeSav’s experienced buyers, interior designers and experts make it easier for homeowners and consumers to make their home spectacular at an affordable price. We find inspirational luxurious home products and negotiate great prices for our members. Our members save time and money by buying from us as they know all products have been carefully selected, we ship to their home and we do it at incredible prices.
SUB: How does the technology behind HomeSav work?
Norman: HomeSav’s technology is based on a unique shopping cart and ecommerce site that has tailored processing to quickly upload our sales events and an algorithm that figures out the optimal way to send products to our members.
SUB: Who do you consider to be your competition?
Norman: One Kings Lane, Fab, Gilt Home.
SUB: What do you offer that differentiates HomeSav from your competitors or from companies with similar offerings?
Norman: We focus on inspired living and are focused on providing all the products and information HomeSav.com members need to furnish and enjoy their house. In addition, we ship to almost all addresses in Canada and the United States.
SUB: What was the inspiration behind HomeSav?
Norman: All three HomeSav.com founders purchased their first home at about the same time. We all had time consuming jobs and found it impossible to find the time and information that we needed to furnish our home and figured there had to be a better way to do it. When we couldn’t find it we created it.
SUB: When was the company founded, and what were the first steps you took in establishing it?
Norman: We decided to work together and started researching the industry. We had complementary skills and made a great team, so we quickly hit the pavement looking for suppliers and figuring out what processes we needed to create to make the products available to members.
SUB: What have the most significant obstacles been so far to building HomeSav?
Norman: Educating potential members about HomeSav.com’s value proposition. Building the required technology.
SUB: You recently raised $1.2 million in seed funding—how do you plan to use the funds?
Norman: Expand the breadth of our team and increase awareness of HomeSav via marketing.
SUB: Why was this a particularly good time to raise new funding?
Norman: HomeSav.com is experiencing rapid growth and could clearly demonstrate how additional funds would let us accelerate growth and reduce risks.
SUB: Do you plan to raise more outside funding in the near future?
Norman: Most likely we will.
SUB: What big goals do you have for HomeSav over the next year or so?
Norman: Make HomeSav.com the only place members have to go for any home-related problems. We will be launching new programs like our Inspired Picks program (experts pick inspiring programs), better user interface and more insightful articles on our blog LivSavvy.com.
HomeSav – www.homesav.com