Thursday, January 17, 2013
Pathjoy Extends In LA With Uber-Inspired Maid Service
If you're a mobile-savvy, technology professional on the go in Los Angeles--but who never has time to clean your apartment or house--the latest Bay Area import, Pathjoy, has your number. The Y Combinator startup is launching into Los Angeles this morning with its mobile inspired, maid service, letting users not only book, schedule, and manage their cleaning appointments online, but also offering affordable rates for the services of a cleaner. The startup--founded by Aaron Cheung and Adora Cheung--has been operating in the San Francisco Bay area for the last year, and recently decided to start its national expansion with service in Los Angeles, as well as Seattle. Cheung told us that the service's expansion into Los Angeles are its first steps to take its model national, and that it believes its $20/hour rate for cleaning will upset existing maid services here, who he says have been targeting the "luxury" market with their expensive rates.
Pathjoy is one of a number of marketplace companies which have followed companies like Uber and Airbnb into helping to connect service providers with consumers. In the case of Pathjoy, the firm says it first helps to vet and interview maid service contractors--including running them through background checks and meeting with them in person--before allowing them to serve its customers. Cheung also said the company has been running its contracts through "test cleanings" to make sure they are living up to the company's quality standards.
Cheung and his sister, Adora, founded Pathjoy after getting frustrated over their own personal efforts to find quality maid service; Cheung said he found that existing providers in the industry, such as Molly Maids and Merry Maids, are too expensive and inconvenient, compared with the firm's technology-driven and low overhead business.