Glasgow-based architecture firm Hoko building headcount after smashing crowdfunding target
More than 300 investors have backed the business, which says it has been valued at £15 million and describes itself as “Uber for architecture”, in its bid to become “the undisputed brand name for UK residential architecture”.
Founder Danny Campbell, who was this week announced as an ambassador for Scottish mental health charity See Me, is now set to begin a recruitment drive to triple Hoko’s total staff number to more than 100, including 30 new architects across the UK.
The firm said the success of the campaign on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube marks its latest milestone, after recently receiving £50,000 of Scottish Edge funding, and seeing revenue over the last year exceed £1m.
Now, more than ten investors are set to receive “the world’s most expensive brick” – a limited-edition, custom-made blue Hoko brick available to anyone who invests more than £25,000.
Mr Campbell, who was recognised at the 2021 Great British Entrepreneur of the Year awards, said: “This is going to accelerate our growth tremendously. We are grateful to every single investor for putting their money where their mouth is and joining us on our journey to provide the perfect client experience to homeowners around the world.
“We have a clear purpose and unlimited ambition. The next few years are going to be incredibly exciting. The residential architecture industry is completely broken and we’re now in a position to fix it on a global scale.”
The business says it offers clients a “smooth, single-transaction project experience, which makes use of cutting-edge technology, including virtual reality and artificial intelligence, to support the high-end design, build and filling of spaces that transform their homes”.
He added: “We have developed a process that allows for a high volume of small projects to be delivered to a high calibre. This is thanks to backing our team of talented architects with a strong and skilled backroom team.
“Small projects are ignored by most big firms – but we believe that needs to change. The architecture industry is scared of us, but we don’t care about that. All we care about is making homeowners happier in their homes.”
Hoko firm expanded across the UK this year, opening studios run by project architects in Inverness, Bristol, Brighton, Birmingham and two in London, and while it also has overseas expansion in its sights.
Last year it announced six-figure backing from a group of investors led by Warren Gee, the chief portfolio officer at private equity firm Cairngorm Capital; Barclay Gilmour’s Donald Wilson; and Graham Campbell of Saracen Fund Managers, who now sit on its board.
Mr Wilson has said: “I believe there’s an opportunity for a digitally focused, innovative business model targeted towards extensions and conversions to support the UK residential property market. Given the personal attributes and strength of character of Danny Campbell, I believe he’s the person to do just that.”
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