A Cape Breton entrepreneurial team with an exit under its belt plans to launch a new online product that helps homeowners find people to perform odd jobs.

The company, Bid Tasker Mobile Applications, features entrepreneurs Donald Hanson, his cousin Darren Hanson and Chief Technical Officer Todd Chant. The two Hansons previously headlined a company called Coretech, which they sold in 2015.

Now they hope to launch Bid Tasker in the next few months, first in Atlantic Canada and then across Canada. In an interview, Donald Hanson said the team is buoyed knowing that they have already been through the complete startup cycle with Coretech, which they sold in 2015.

“The very first thing that it does is it gives us the confidence that we can do it successfully,” said Hanson. “We can move forward with the confidence that we have a product that is the right one and we can take it to market.”

He admitted that the two projects are markedly different. Coretech developed a software tool that helped oil and gas companies record the findings of core samples produced in exploration. It was a business-to-business play, with a narrow market. With Bid Tasker, they will have to capture clients among two populations – homeowners, and the workers that perform jobs.

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As well as receiving support from the Cape Breton startup community, Donald Hanson also noted the support he personally has received as a Mi’kmaw entrepreneur and a member of the Membertou First Nation.

The genesis of Bid Tasker dates back to a time when Darren Hanson – the ideas guy in the partnership – was working in the oil patch out West and needed jobs done back home in Cape Breton. He wished he had an online or mobile tool that could help him find handymen or trades people at home.

The resulting product is similar to online tools found in other markets, like Task Rabbit in the U.S. and Air Tasker in Australia. Donald Hanson said there is only one competitor now in Canada, a Western Canadian business, and Bid Tasker is a more open system, allowing the participation of all forms of workers.

What Bid Tasker will do is allow homeowners to post the jobs they want performed – say, a window repaired or the lawn mowed – and suggest a price. A range of workers can bid for the task, providing a quote. Once the site has been going for a while, the homeowners will be able to see ratings of the workers, allowing them to make an informed decision on who to pick.

“Think of it as a hybrid between Kijiji and eBay,” said Donald Hanson. “You just log in and can post any sort of job.”

He admitted that the team faces a challenge in getting word out to both sides of the market. The solution will involve a combination of word of mouth (essential in the early stages), traditional and social media. He’s even preparing to go through the local Yellow Pages and call workers to tell them of the new service.

“We see it as a very busy year for us,” he said. “For the first quarter of the launch, we’re going to stay with Atlantic Canada and make sure it works perfectly. Then we’ll hit some of the larger centres across the country and continue to develop.”