In 2008, Ben Rich and Carl Healy were working in sales and tech respectively for a major Australian energy company and were frustrated by the glacial pace of innovation in the industry...
They witnessed first-hand the slow, cumbersome and frustratingly complex process of arranging power and gas supply to a new building site, with the primary tools of phone and fax leading to poor levels of transparency, accountability and reliability.
At the same time, iPhones were quickly being adopted by builders (traditionally not a very tech savvy demographic) and the energy market had just been de-regulated. Ben and Carl saw the massive potential for industry disruption and left the corporate world to tackle the energy connection problems of builders with a new, streamlined digital solution which they called Connect Assist.
Connect Assist began in typical startup fashion, bootstrapped (self-funded) out of a tiny unit in the Brisbane suburb of Morningside. Ben was sales and Carl was dev. The first iteration of Connect Assist was simply a digitised version of the paper-based forms used to arrange supply of power and gas. But they were the first of their kind and proved extremely popular!
Connect Assist then evolved into the first New Connections Platform, which builders could use for free. The business grew quickly based purely on word of mouth... no-one else really understood and solved their problems like us.
Over time, by listening to the needs of builders, Connect Assist grew into a sophisticated cloud app that could easily arrange, track and manage supply of power and gas for any number of concurrent sites. The ability to transfer energy accounts into the home owner’s name at the end of the build was added to ensure the power stayed on when they moved in!
Today, Connect Develop has in-house product design, engineering, support and sales teams; thousands of registered builders who arrange over 60,000 connections every year; and partnerships with multiple national energy retailers.
In late 2017, Alinta Energy made a large investment in return for an equity stake in our company, a move which enables us to scale and innovate across new market channels.
Our mission now is helping all types of customers arrange power and gas connections quickly and pain-free. One day, we dream of building an integrated digital marketplace for a range of utility services which will make even more people's lives easier and less stressful.Ask us a question!