Fairfax has joined the battle for the digital tradie dollar by buying into Oneflare

Sascha Schuermann/Getty Images

Fairfax Media has bought a strategic stake in Oneflare, an online digital marketplace for local trade services and a competitor to hipages in which News Corp has a significant stake.

The media group’s Domain real estate online classifieds business paid $15 million for a 35% interest in Oneflare, which was founded in 2011 and now gets 1.3 million visitors a month.

News Corp in December bought 25% of hipages, another Australian online marketplace for tradespeople, for an undisclosed figure, reported to be as much as $40 million.

Home improvement and trade services are a key growth area for Oneflare which has more than 80,000 registered businesses across 150 service categories.

“We continue to see significant opportunities to invest in Domain Group as it expands into adjacent markets,” says Fairfax Media CEO Greg Hywood.

“Local trade services represent a substantial market and Oneflare is very well positioned to take advantage of the growth in this rapidly-emerging digital marketplace.”

Oneflare founder and CEO Adam Dong says the deal will deliver a huge win for home renovators, house hunters, tradies and real estate agents.

Last year Oneflare generated $450 million of jobs with 160% year-on-year growth across home categories including concreting, renovating, gardening, removals, painting and general cleaning.

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