Angi CEO Oisin Hanrahan told CNN Business the name change is meant to help highlight that the company owns other housing-related services, notably HomeAdvisor and gig economy marketplace Handy. (Hanrahan is a Handy co-founder, who joined Angi in 2018 after the company bought his startup.)
“The Angie’s List brand is known and loved … People understand what it stands for and trust it,” Hanrahan said. “The challenge is that we’re not just a list anymore. Customers were confined and constrained by the literal nature of the name.”
He noted Angi has focused on all aspects of the home improvement business, giving customers an easy way to find contractors, book them and pay them — not just a place to review them.
That strategy has paid dividends in the past year, when millions have been stuck at home during the Covid-19 pandemic or fleeing to the suburbs for more space. Wherever they live, many people have been looking to improve their residences, or they’re taking on big projects like moving to a new house.
Angi is part of the Barry Diller IAC web of public companies
Shares of Angi are up nearly 25% this year and have soared about 250% in the past 12 months.
But what will happen to Angi now that many people stuck at home during the past year are looking to travel more thanks to greater availability of vaccines and the economy’s reopening? They may not be as focused on trying to find painters or people to fix a broken closet door.
Hanrahan concedes that Americans want to get out and start doing things. But he thinks the broader trend of people improving their homes won’t change — and they will increasingly want to use services like Angi on their phones to find, book and pay professional handypeople, he said.
“Of course as people start to travel again, there will be a shift in how people spend. But the much bigger shift is from offline spending to online spending in general,” he said.
As for the eponymous Angie of Angie’s list, Angela Hicks Bowman is said to be cool with the name change. In fact, Hicks is still with the company, serving as both Angi’s chief customer officer and a board director.
“She’s incredibly excited about the evolution and mission of the company,” Hanrahan said. “Home is the most important place on Earth and we want to help people love where they live.”