In March 2020, Sami Bouremoum and Michael Ginzo, two tech entrepreneurs with a background in consulting (Bouremoum worked for Bain & Company) and software development (Ginzo led product in hiring startup Deel), got together to launch together Hofy, a company that supplies office equipment to remote workers. It wasn’t long after that that Hofy started earning revenues at a low six-figure figure, Bouremoum claims, as the pandemic forced workers around the world to switch to working from home.
More than two years later, investors still believe in Hofy’s mission, apparently. The company today closed a $15 million Series B round led by CNP with participation from Stride, 20VC, Day One Ventures, Kindred Capital, Asset and TrueSight, bringing Hofy’s total to $30.2 million. Bouremoum tells australiabusinessblog.com that the new money will be used to expand Hofy’s service to more countries while also expanding its range of IT services.
“We wouldn’t exist without the pandemic and overall remote working accelerated by 20 years creating a huge market opportunity for this solution. Right now, our growth comes from our existing customers hiring more employees,” Bouremoum told australiabusinessblog.com in an email interview. “Initially, Hofy was supposed to do a bigger round in early 2022, but since then we’ve built a business that has positive cash flow and doesn’t require huge amounts of VC dollars to scale. In this way we do not dilute existing investors and employees.”
Hofy, which initially only served customers in the UK but is now available in 110 countries, handles equipment orders and shipments for business customers. Once integrated with an HR system, Hofy can be used to set rules such as budgets and usage policies. New hires invited to the platform will be able to order their equipment – be it laptops, monitors or accessories – ahead of the launch dates.
Hofy provides customer support, including loaner devices in the event that equipment needs repair. The platform also allows for offboarding, allowing administrators to remotely clear the pre-collection of devices.
“Companies spend an average of 3.5 hours equipping a new employee,” says Bouremoum. “Hofy equipment is leased, transforming initial capital expenditures into manageable operational costs closely aligned with the dynamic nature of startup hiring and revenue. Customers want to ensure that every team member has access to a productive, compatible remote work setup from anywhere in the world… Hofy [can] natively integrate into a stack of tools and help employers hire and manage employee lifecycles worldwide.”
Additionally, Hofy provides an API that enables HR vendors to offer hardware delivery and recovery as a managed service. One of the startup’s first integration partners is Deel, Ginzo’s longtime employer, which allows customers to use Hofy through the Deel platform to purchase and ship equipment.
“Imagine not only being able to manage a new employee’s digital onboarding on Workday, but also physically get their equipment with them without having to leave Workday,” Bouremoum continues. “This is the type of application that enables our API.”
Hofy competes with Fleet, which recently raised $20 million for its service that helps track and manage business devices such as laptops. Allwhere is another rival: it is a consultancy that works with companies to implement remote work sets, including equipment lifecycle management.
Perhaps the bigger, more existential threat to Hofy is the changing attitudes around remote work. While workers claim working from home has made them more productive — and saved they money – many executives are skeptical and pose a clear threat to remote equipment management startups such as Hofy. In a recent study by Microsoft, 85% of bosses said hybrid work makes it harder to trust employees to be productive. Those same bosses strongly encourage staffers to return to the office. According to Kastle systemsa security firm, office occupancy reached a pandemic earlier this month, with an average of 47.5% of workers swiping into offices in 10 of the country’s major metropolitan areas compared to pre-pandemic levels.
If Bouremoum has concerns, he has not expressed them.
“We made the decision to move to a cash flow positive business model in early 2022, which we were able to do faster than we originally planned,” he said, refusing to disclose revenue figures. “We have a strong product in a large and growing market, so we’re not worried about weathering the headwinds, especially with this recent round of funding.”
London-based Hofy plans to grow its team from 95 to 120 employees by the end of the year.