The Finnish startup Sharetribe, which officially launches today at the Slush Conference, makes it easy for people to build their own marketplace and let their community buy, sell or rent any type of product or service. In addition to the launch, Sharetribe announced that it secured $1 million in seed funding.
Sharetribe CEO Juho Makkonen, who first got involved with the sharing economy while studying at Helsinki’s Aalto University, expains: “We’re invoking the spirit of Airbnb and Etsy, but creating something unique by allowing our users to build their own individual peer-to-peer marketplace services”
Creating a new marketplace site with Sharetribe takes no more than a couple of minutes, and marketplace managers can make money from transaction fees. From today, Sharetribe also supports a new global payment system, making transactions smooth, wherever your marketplace is located.
To boost its global growth – Sharetribe already has marketplaces in more than 50 countries as part of its initial beta-testing rollout – the company has raised $1 million from top Finnish investors like Lifeline Ventures; Reaktor Polte, and Tekes.
The founders, Juho Makkonen and COO Antti Virolainen, have been building online marketplaces since 2008. Since then they’ve met dozens of people all struggling with the same challenges, and Sharetribe was born out off their needs.
“Online marketplaces are hard, you have to build up the community and match supply and demand, and of course not everybody is an expert in building a website” says Juho Makkonen. He continues: “We created the Sharetribe platform to solve the technical part of it, so that entrepreneurs could focus on what matters the most: their community. We help aspiring entrepreneurs make their dreams come true”.