Austin-based RigUp Lands $300 Million in Funding led by Andreessen Horowitz to Expand its Labor Marketplace for the Energy Industry

RigUp CoFounders Xuan Yong and Mike Witte, courtesy photo

In one of the largest funding deals for an Austin-based startup ever, RigUp announced on Thursday that it has raised $300 million led by Andreessen Horowitz, a16z.

That brings the total raised by RigUp, founded in 2014, to $423.8 million. The Austin-based company is an online marketplace for services and labor for the energy industry.

In addition to Andreessen Horowitz, RigUp’s investors in its Series D round included Founders Fun, Bedrock Capital, and Quantum Energy Partners. New investors include Baillie

Gifford and Brookfield Growth Partners.

As part of the funding deal, David George, partner at Andreessen Horowitz, will join RigUp’s board.

“RigUp stands alone in serving the energy labor market with much needed technology and fundamentally allows for better matching of supply and demand, resulting in significantly improved time-to-hire and visibility for both the independent contractors searching for the right projects and the energy companies looking to fill jobs with higher-quality personnel,” George said in a news statement.

Xuan Yong and Mike Witte, both graduates of Texas A&M University, founded RigUp. Today, the company has more than 300 employees. With the funding, RigUp plans to hire additional employees for its Austin office as well as its Denver office.

RigUp’s platform matches contract workers with energy companies. This year, the company will exceed $2 billion in volume, up 200 percent from a year ago, on its platform, according to RigUp.

In the energy industry, blue-collar labor is hard to find and in high demand, according to RigUp.

“Field work, largely performed by a workforce of highly-skilled independent contractors, has typically been staffed through a fragmented network of brick-and-mortar firms,” Yong, RigUp CEO and co-founder said in a news release. “That’s inefficient for the companies that need to quickly staff projects and manage labor costs, and it doesn’t give independent contractors access to all available opportunities.”

RigUp offers contract field workers access to energy companies, flexible payment terms, and access to partners that provide healthcare benefits and training.

“RigUp is serving a workforce that, up until now, hasn’t been able to take advantage of the expanded opportunities technology affords,” said RigUp COO and co-founder Witte. “RigUp covers more than 100 energy industry service categories in every oil and gas basin and every major wind and solar region in the continental United States. That opens up enormous potential for workers and for energy companies looking to hire.”

RigUp plans to use the latest investment to continue expansion into renewable energy, midstream oil and gas, and downstream operations