Trending: New York Times report reveals more connections between Bill Gates and Jeffrey Epstein


USA Today named its 2014 Entrepreneur of the Year today, and the winner is … Matt Ehrlichman, the CEO of Porch, the Seattle-based home improvement data startup.

Matt Ehrlichman, Porch CEO.

It’s a big recognition for Ehrlichman, 35, and the company — including a featured spot at the top of the USA Today front page and the front of the newspaper’s Money section. Porch is one of the fastest-growing startups in the Seattle region, growing to more than 300 employees from only 30 a little more than a year ago.

USA Today says its editors made the pick from 10 finalists. “I’m surprised and humbled, and all credit really goes to our team,” Ehrlichman told the newspaper. Here’s how the newspaper explains the selection in the story announcing the award.

Choosing Ehrlichman over nine other dynamic company founders was a difficult task, “given the amazingly diverse group of people in the mix, each of whom were solving problems in unique ways,” says David Callaway, USA TODAY’s editor in chief. “Ultimately, we selected Porch because they took an existing dilemma and created a custom solution that leveraged a social network in an innovative way.” …

Key criteria in the contest included exhibiting significant growth this year and solving a consumer problem.

Porch — which faces competition from sites including, Houzz, and Zillow Digs — has raised $33 million to date, including a $27.6 million Series A funding round led by the Lowe’s home-improvement chain. The company earlier this year announced a partnership with Lowe’s in which store employees use Porch to help customers find contractors and remodelers.

Porch has amassed data about millions home improvement projects across the country, allowing homeowners to see details about projects in their neighborhoods, and connect with remodelers and contractors. Porch offers its service for free to homeowners, charging professionals for market insights and promotional exposure in specific geographies.

The company this week launched its first mobile app.

Like what you're reading? Subscribe to GeekWire's free newsletters to catch every headline


Job Listings on GeekWork

Find more jobs on GeekWork. Employers, post a job here.