PeoplePerHour gets Index Ventures top-up and hires former Skype and Gumtree heads

A business aimed at providing a marketplace for freelance services has closed a £2 million funding round led by Index Ventures.

London-headquartered PeoplePerHour, a start-up established in 2008, has secured follow-on backing of Index Ventures.

To coincide with the investment round, PeoplePerHour, which allows people to list services on its platform for purchase, has launched its iPhone app.

It has a service called ‘Hourlies’ which it says turns the buying per hour model ‘on its head’ by allowing anyone to buy and sell pre-packaged services at a fixed price in bundles.

It cites design, writing and digital as popular categories on its platform but says other listings have included making a custom dog coat in three hours for £25 and CV writing from scratch in an hour for £10.

The business has also hired David Engel, former financial director at Skype and Yahoo! Europe, as CFO and Katie Kitiri, previously head of customer service, trust & safety at Gumtree, as director of operations.

Founder and CEO Xenios Thrasyvoulou says that the company’s vision is to make buying and selling of services as easy and widespread as buying on Amazon or eBay.

He adds, ‘Our goals over the next twelve months are to carry on building the team and the product, consolidate our position as market leader in the UK and expand to new markets in particular the US where we recently set up an office in New York.’

PeoplePerHour’s first fundraising activity came back in January 2009 when it raised £425,000 of angel funding. It then went on to close two further rounds with Index Ventures worth £450,000 in February 2010 and £3.8 million in December 2010.

The deal is the second in a week for Index Ventures following its lead role in Secret Escapes’ latest funding round which saw £8 million committed.

Thrasyvoulou set up PeoplePerHour alongside Simos Kitiris and has led the business to 100 per cent year-over-year growth since its inception. Away from its base in London it also has offices in Athens and New York.

Hunter Ruthven

Bernard Williamson

Hunter was the Editor for from 2012 to 2014, before moving on to Caspian Media Ltd to be Editor of Real Business.

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Venture capital funding