£1m investment

Materials search site backed by ex-Skyscanner exec

Shane Corstorphine
Shane Corstorphine is advising the new firm

A Scottish tech start-up that aims to revolutionise the way construction materials are purchased has raised £1 million from investors.

BuildBuddy, co-founded by Scots entrepreneurs Jamie Menzies and Alix Baldwin, is a web platform that uses advanced technology and AI to help SME builders find the best deals on materials, similar to how Skyscanner works for flights.

They have recruited former Skyscanner executive and East Lothian-based tech expert Shane Corstophine as a board adviser.

The platform scours the web for the best deals with the most suitable delivery terms, saving as much as 14% on a typical order.

East Lothian-born Menzies, came up with concept for BuildBuddy after experiencing frustrations with the cost of building materials while managing his own construction company, Zebra Property Group, which has offices in Edinburgh and London.

He teamed up with Baldwin, a former managing director of price comparison site Funeral Choice, to co-found BuildBuddy, and the duo have now raised £1million in seed capital to support the platform’s roll out. 

Mr Menzies said: “Raising £1million in seed capital is a huge milestone for BuildBuddy and reflects the confidence investors have in our concept.

“As any builder will know, securing high-quality materials at the right price is not only hugely time consuming, but extremely expensive.

“Just as Skyscanner has helped travellers find the best deals on flights, BuildBuddy will streamline the process of purchasing construction materials, allowing the UK’s 330,000 SME builders to find the best goods at the best price.

“BuildBuddy is an incredibly exciting concept that has the potential to revolutionise the construction industry.”

Mr Baldwin added: “With as much as £72billion spent on construction materials every year in the UK, this is a huge market that is ripe for innovation.

“Raising £1million is a clear endorsement of BuildBuddy’s potential, and we cannot wait to take our next steps.

“Skyscanner and many other companies reflect the quality and depth of Scotland’s tech industry, and we are excited for BuildBuddy to become a major player in this vibrant sector.”

Mr Corstorphine said: “BuildBuddy is an ingenious idea and – as this landmark investment shows – Jamie and Alix are exceptionally well-equipped to execute it.”

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