Bob is looking for a travel pillow for a long bus jouney, while Moni needs a circular saw to build furniture. Someone definitely has that lying around, but only uses it once a year – if that. This is where Peerby – which was founded in Amsterdam in 2011, went online in 2012, and participated in the first London intake of the American accelerator TechStarts – positions its lending platform and app. The number of Dutch users grew quickly, which led to the formation of communities in Spain, New York, London, and Berlin, something the founders hadn’t really foreseen. In contrast to many other services, which follow the concept of 'lend something to your neighbour', Peerby is based around requests. Instead of having to look through lists in the neighbourhood to find what is available, users post a specific request for what they need.
That has the additional advantage that interested parties do not first have to make an inventory of their entire household contents, but can rather respond to particular needs. The concept seems to be taking off. According to management, over 80% of requests are answered in the first 30 minutes.
For 2014, Peerby plans to expand further, with the ultimate goal of facilitating the motto: “everything for everyone, everywhere!”. Fans of the idea can help Peerby by applying to become an ambassador for their city on Peerby's website.