4th November 2019

Meet the founder: crowdhaüs

Claire Corlett

In the second blog of our ‘Meet the founder’ series, we introduce Conan and Matt from crowdhaüs who tell us about how they met and came up with the idea for their startup.

Q: Who are the founders behind crowdhaüs, and what are your backgrounds?

A: Conan Osborne and Matt Pollen, both graduates of the University of York where we first met and began playing rugby together. We’ve lived and played rugby both together and separately overseas, before returning to the UK to begin careers in management consulting for Conan and media for Matt.

Both founders hold a Masters degree, but Matt being the older of the two believes he’s also the wiser. I guess it’s age before beauty as they say!

Q: Tell us the story behind your startup – why did you start your company?

A: We initially had a different idea for crowdhaüs, which in short involved helping first time buyers get onto the property ladder using a crowdfunding platform. However, due to our own painful experiences both renting and buying, in late 2018, we shifted our focus to creating a way in which millennials and digital natives could interact with the world of property search like they do with so many other industries – simple interactions, instant information, all on-the-go.

Q: What does success look like for you?

A: It’s difficult to define this, because everything happens so fast in the start-up world. What we would have considered success 6 months ago, is different to what we would consider success now.

Talking to businesses that finished this programme a year ago, where they are now sounds almost like a pipe dream. So being part of an accelerator programme such as this, would definitely have been on that list of success when we first started working on this.

But if we were forced to answer, right now we believe success would be helping our first consumer find the perfect home, in a simple and engaging way – creating an industry alternative and shaking up the world of property search.

Q: What’s your biggest achievement so far?

A: This one is easy, being a part of this Geovation cohort would rank highest on our list of achievements to date. With so many start-ups being created and on the other end of the spectrum, failing each year, it really gave us the validation to the work we’ve put in so far. To be chosen on this programme ahead of so many other great business ideas, is a huge milestone, and we look forward to taking this opportunity and seeing where we are in 6 months time.

Q: What are your plans for your startup over the next six months?

A: We really want to hone in on our business strategy moving forward so we know we are scaling the right business, which Geovation will be supporting us with. The MVP of our app is nearing completion, so we will look to test, and improve our offering whilst trialling our product in the market. We don’t want to say too much else on this, because we want you to come on this journey with us. So follow us on instagram, twitter, facebook or LinkedIN and be a part of the crowd!

Q: Tell us something interesting about yourself?

A: Conan has competed at a Rugby World Cup in San Francisco and a Commonwealth Games in the Gold Coast. Matt is the founder of another start-up called UCAAN, in the digital advertising and recycling space!

Find out more about the Geovation Accelerator, and how you could become one of our startups.