We talk to Christiaan Huynen, founder of DesignBro, our featured startup of this week.
Read the Dutch version on Emerce.
Christiaan, what exactly do you do?
My name is Christiaan and I am one of the founders of DesignBro. At DesignBro we have created a platform that makes it easy for the marketeer to be connected with high-quality, curated, designers for all of their graphic design needs.
Where do you see its main application?
Currently, we see that 60%+ of our customers are based in the US, and range from startup founders to large corporations. Any client that has a need to centralize their graphic design sourcing (such as Branding, Website, or Packaging Designs) and ensure that multiple pre-selected designers work on their projects simultaneously, is a great fit.
What is the impact of your business?
Having founded & run a London based agency for 10+ years, I can genuinely say that globally, the agency model is changing. Many agencies are facing pressure from their customers to deliver faster and for less. Because of the different internal processes and staff positions an agency has, this becomes unsustainable for many of them over time.
At DesignBro we believe in offering a balanced alternative where there is a fair chance for the designers to score the jobs they need and getting paid, while still listening very closely to what the market is demanding. At the same time, we believe that the graphic design industry is guilty of using tons of paper, so we promise to plant 1 tree for every project started, hoping to reduce some of the carbon footprint the industry as a whole is creating.
Where do you stand right now?
We have currently served well over a 1000 paying customers, many of which have started follow-on projects since. We are growing with 40%+ per quarter, and working hard with our sales, marketing & development teams to continue and build upon this growth.
Our initial push was focused on the US market and now we are looking to roll out localized versions of DesignBro, with The Netherlands being the trial market coming up.
Who has invested in you and what kind of investors are you looking for?
We have a mix of angel investors at this moment of time, this includes; successful founders of other companies, some of our clients, ex-google & ex-uber managers, and VC managers (privately).
What would be the ideal investor match?
We are looking for an investor (or a small number), that will help us achieve our ambition of becoming the world’s leading high-quality graphic design platform. With our initial growth we have proven that we can scale, but in an investor, we are looking for a partner. A partner that can help us with our venture route ambition, and ensure we avoid specific pitfalls in that field.
This could be an early-stage VC, but it could also be an angel with experience in this field, or a strategic investor with specific knowledge, or access in our field.
Best of luck with everything!