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De Vinderij, a Dutch startup providing the home services OppasStudent (babysitting), PoetsStudent (cleaning) and SeniorenStudent (elderly assistants) will continue under a new name: Careibu! The reason for this name change is that the company will expand and enter international markets in 2017. Founders Lotte (30) and Anne (29) van Oudheusden have a clear mission in mind: to become Europe’s best online platform for help at home.
Sisters Lotte and Anne founded de Vinderij 7 years ago. It started out as a small network of babysitting students in Amsterdam and has become a national community existing of over 20.000 students and 10.000 clients.
Creating a lasting impact on society is as important to Lotte and Anne as setting up a successful business. Anne: ‘We offer students side jobs that aren’t just about making money. They get to connect with different generations and establish lasting and personal relationships. Our community is a source for inspirational stories, from a match between a sitter with diabetes looking after a child with the same condition to a match between a student and a senior who visit rap concerts together.’ The aim is to offer everyone their perfect match. Thanks to its social impact Careibu has received several awards. One of the highlights was a visit from HRH King Willem-Alexander.
Careibu took part in the business accelerator programme Startupbootcamp, enabling the company to make major leaps over a short period of time. As a result Careibu has raised 400.000 euros. This is Careibu’s first external investment in the entire 7 years of its existence. The money will go towards setting up an inhouse tech team, launching an app, marketing campaigns and international expansion. Lotte and Anne have already taken the first steps towards expanding to Berlin. Lotte: ‘There are so many opportunities for us in Berlin. There are hardly any good babysitting services and social exclusion of the elderly is as much of a problem there as it is in the Netherlands. German investors have already shown interest and we have set our eye on the right people to form the local team.’
A ‘caribou’ (reindeer) is a social animal that lives in herds, just like the Careibu community can be considered as one big social herd. The ‘e’ in Careibu is added to draw focus to the care that students offer. The ‘o’ is left out to resemble the word ‘karibu’ which means ‘Welcome!’ in Swahili. Anne: ‘Our Careibu family takes care of all generations: as a kid you are looked after by a student babysitter, as a student you find a side job within the community, when you finish studying and start working you can employ a student for babysitting or cleaning and as you grow older students offer assistance and companion.’ Lotte: ‘In short, our new name entails everything which our company represents and it is suited to cross international borders.’
For further information contact Anne van Oudheusden at email@example.com or call +31 20 308 0011.