FARGO - A company that bills itself as the Uber of snowplowing and landscaping is moving into the Fargo-Moorhead area, though booking a plow date with your smart phone will be iffy for this early bout of winter, a company official said.
Plows & Mowz Outdoor Home Services is now signing up snow plowing and landscaping companies, co-founder Wills Mahoney said Thursday, Oct. 10. The app-based firm hopes to have at 75 landscaping firms signed up before it makes its full launch, he said.
“You guys are getting snow pretty early this season, so it was kind of a surprise,” Mahoney said.
The Syracuse, N.Y.-based firm was attracted to the F-M area by its growth and interest tracked by inquiries taken through the company's app.
“We think it’s a perfect market,” he said.
Mahoney said the app might be available for a limited area in this storm.
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Once the company officially launches, the initial goal will be to serve a 20-mile radius from central Fargo, expanding that reach as more landscaping and snowplowing firms sign on as contractors.
“We’ll definitely be there, if not this storm, the next storm that you guys have,” Mahoney said.
Mahoney and Andrew Englander started the firm five years ago.
Mahoney says it is the leading on-demand snowplowing service in the country, with more than 7,000 landscapers signed up in 40 markets, he said.
Like the Uber or Lyft ride services, all of the operators are independent contractors, Mahoney said.
“We’re dealing with landscaping companies, so the kid down the street with a shovel can’t join our platform,” he said.
The average business working with Plowz and Mowz has been operating seven years, “so we are dealing with seasoned professionals,” he said.
Mahoney said the firm shows landscapers and plow operators jobs on their existing routes. That makes their work more efficient, “plus we pay them within 24 hours.”
The rates for the F-M area are being finalized now by Plowz and Mowz. Mahoney said they are competitive for both the landscapers/plow operators and consumers.
Customers can use the firm’s smartphone app or log onto the firm’s website to order services, whether that’s plowing, grass mowing, leaf removal, or other lawn and garden work.
The firm is “the Swiss army knife of outdoor home services,” Mahoney said. “Basically, with our app, you can get anything done outside on demand.”
The customer plugs in their address and the app solicits some information to calculate a price in real time. The customer can then choose when they want the plow to show up. If the customer is satisfied with the price quote, they can then order the service with a tap of their finger.
“In Minneapolis, Minnesota, which is our top market right now, you can have a plow show up in as little as 10 minutes or you can have it show up the next morning before you go to work,” Mahoney said.
The app is also popular with snowbirds, who get a picture of the completed work, “so they know the job was done right,” Mahoney said.
Mahoney said it was first-hand experience that drove development of the app.
“Syracuse is the snow capital of the country. It all really kind of came about due to my mom not being able to get out of her driveway. And I called every landscaping company I knew and no one picked up their phone. Meanwhile, while I was shoveling out her driveway, I saw plow trucks driving by. And I said, you know I can solve this problem. And that’s what we set out to do,” he said.
For more information, go online to plowzandmowz.com.