Laundryheap, the UK’s largest on-demand laundry and dry-cleaning service, has acquired competitor Laundrapp from Inc Retail.
The deal, the terms of which remain undisclosed, follows a steady expansion of Laundryheap’s market footprint since it was founded in 2014.
Laundryheap was founded in London by Deyan Dimitrov, Mayur Bommai and Ruxandra Lica and now operates across the UK and 10 additional international markets, including the US, Singapore, and the UAE. The Laundryheap team bootstrapped the business for the first three years, refining their model and plotting a path to sustainable growth, before raising their first VC capital in 2017.
Since then, Laundryheap has focused on building out its global footprint and expanding service offerings for both consumer and B2B markets. This has included brokering key laundry partnerships with Holiday Inn, Premier Inn, JustEat, UnderTheDoormat, Ibis and Best Western.
Laundryheap is now the world’s biggest provider of on-demand laundry and dry-cleaning services. In 2021, the company saw growth of more than 300%.
This approach contrasted with market competitors Laundrapp (founded by Hambro Perks) and Zipjet (backed by Rocket Internet), both founded in 2014. Laundrapp and Zipjet collectively secured over £30m in VC financing, led extensive marketing campaigns across the UK, and acquired a range of competitors. Laundrapp acquired Washbox in 2015, with Zipjet acquiring Asteria Cleaners in 2016 and Cleanio in 2017.
The Laundrapp and Zipjet brands then merged in 2019 under the Laundrapp brand. The company entered administration in 2020 before being bought out by Inc Retail (part of the Inc & Co Group), the retail group behind brands such as KNOMO London & Chop’d, who enabled the brand to continue operations.
Since then, Laundrapp has continued to provide services across London and 15 other UK towns or cities.
This acquisition will expand Laundryheap’s regional reach across the UK, increase its customer base, and provide access to an augmented network of transport and logistics partners. All Laundrapp employees will be retained and, over the coming months, the Laundrapp brand will be replaced by the Laundryheap brand.
“In 2014, on-demand laundry and dry-cleaning became a hugely competitive space almost overnight,” said Dmitrov, CEO of Laundryheap.
“At Laundryheap, we did our best to keep our heads down and stay out of the fray. Instead, we bootstrapped the business and iterated the model until we were confident that we could scale-up the offering in a sustainable way. Only then did we raise a strategic amount of VC investment.
“This mindful approach is a philosophy we have maintained ever since and over the last 8 years we’ve gone from strength to strength, including launching successfully across a range of international markets.
“The acquisition of Laundrapp is a testament to the resilience of our model and ongoing demand for high-quality, reliable on-demand laundry services. We’re delighted to be expanding our UK footprint by welcoming Laundrapp customers and partners onto the Laundryheap platform.”
Laundryheap has raised £7m in funding to date from VCs and angel investors. The business employs a team of 80 people.