Feb 16, 2024 - News

Durham startup Higharc raises $53 million to modernize home design

A construction worker helps install framing on a house

Photo: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Higharc, a Durham software maker seeking to modernize the way builders design homes, is gaining momentum, raising $53 million from investors that include industry leaders like Home Depot and Ferguson.

  • The new round of funding brings the company's valuation to $233 million, CEO Marc Minor told Axios.

Why it matters: Founded in 2018, Higharc's tools automate much of the design process for new homes. It also creates 3D online models that make it easy for customers to pick their own design elements.

  • Higharc's software updates plans immediately as design changes are made, taking into account local code rules and how each small tweak could lead to differences in material usage and affect design in other parts of the home.

State of play: Minor said he believes Higharc's tools work better and more efficiently than AutoCAD, a 41-year-old software platform that is still used by a majority of designers and architects.

  • It's even persuaded Carl Bass, the former CEO of Autodesk, which makes AutoCAD, to invest in Higharc.

What they're saying: "90% of homes in the U.S. are designed using a 40-year-old piece of software," Minor said in an interview. "Our goal and our trajectory is to replace that piece of software and to be used on all homes."

Zoom in: The company has around 70 employees but will likely add 20 positions this year thanks to the funding, Minor said. About 10 are in Durham.

  • But Higharc was founded as a remote-friendly operation and also has offices in San Francisco and Atlanta.

Of note: Schneider Electric is also an investor in Higharc.

The bottom line: The building and construction industry is intrigued by Higharc, Minor noted, because it believes the data its software produces can more accurately forecast the amount of materials needed to build a home — potentially cutting down on waste.


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