Homage, an online platform that provides on-demand caregiving solutions to the elderly in Singapore, has secured US$1.2 million in seed funding from US-based 500Startups, early-stage VC firm Golden Gate Ventures, and seed investor SeedPlus. The financing will be used to accelerate product development and scale operations, the startup said in a statement. Homage was founded in 2016 by Y-Combinator alumni Gillian Tee (CEO), Lily Phang, and Tong Duong. The team was motivated to start Homage when they saw a clear and urgent demand for in-home care for the elderly, who currently number more than 450,000 in Singapore’s rapidly ageing population. “Nowhere is shortage of quality caregiving more acute than in Singapore and Asia, where many families struggle to find in-home solutions they can trust. The process is time-consuming, costly, and most of all, deeply stressful,” said Tee.

“Today, with smart technology powering our platform, we are closer than ever to solve the challenges of finding the right caregivers for our seniors, quickly, effectively, and affordably. At the heart of our mission is helping our parents and grandparents have the joy, comfort and control to remain in their own homes as they age,” she added. The health-tech startup also serves as an enabler for “micro-entrepreneurship”, providing specialised training to both aspiring and experienced care professionals. These care professionals are then hand-picked to provide services through Homage. The company claims to have delivered more than 10,000 hours of caregiving services. The startup has earlier raised an angel funding from a clutch of renowned entrepreneurs, including Huang Shao-Ning and Lim Dershing (co-founders of local career portal JobsCentral), Pieter Walraven (founder of work chat app Pie), Phey Teck Moh (former President of Motorola Solutions, Asia Pacific) and Juha Panaanen (former founder of Non-stop games). In January last year, Care24, an India-based home healthcare platform, raised US$4 million in Series A round of funding from SAIF Partners.