We talked to Adolfo Delibes about how Rentchester helps people rent furniture for as long as they need for a comfortable monthly fee and without bonds, and this is what he had to say.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Adolfo Delibes: Luckily, we are fine, and so are our families. We are all trying to adapt to the “new normal” and excited about the vaccine’s inspiring news.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Rentchester?
Adolfo Delibes: I studied Business Administration at IE Business School in Madrid with a focus on Entrepreneurship. After a few years of living and working in retail strategy in Dubai, I decided to move back to Spain. While I was trying to get rid of the furniture, myself and Rentchester’s co-founder Ignacio Posadas, industrial engineer and consultant, realized that the whole process of furnishing a house is way more complicated than it should be. The struggle is not just choosing the furniture, the high-related costs, waiting for the delivery, or wasting hours assembling it. The real problem comes afterward. What do you do with the furniture once you have to move once again? Currently, you can only undersell it, give it away, or throw it out.
How does Rentchester innovate?
Adolfo Delibes: Furniture should not be a burden; we are here to disrupt the industry and evangelize people about the new consumption trends.
Rentchester was born to offer total user flexibility by simplifying the entire process of furnishing a house. From the POV of time, money, and sustainability, renting furniture instead of buying it makes much sense. Choose the furniture that adapts to your circumstance just for the time you need with the option to swap, purchase, or return when life or tastes change.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Adolfo Delibes: Rentchester achieved a double-digit monthly growth regardless of the pandemic. We are a recently launched startup, and the pandemic impacted us. It slowed our growth. The good thing about being a small company is the fastest response to changes and the ease of adapting to new scenarios than big multinationals.
After a couple of weeks of uncertainty, we adjusted our business model and turned the situation around. During crises, both the offer and the demand for rental products tend to increase, and we used it in our favor.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Adolfo Delibes: Unfortunately, we could not hire all the people that we had in mind before the pandemic due to the market uncertainty and had to continue with limited resources for some time. We have decided that no matter how much we grow, we need always to keep a startup mindset to cope with unexpected events in the future. We restructured the company in such a way that flexibility & adaptability are some of our top priorities.
How do you deal with stress and anxiety?
Adolfo Delibes: It has been a wild ride of up and downs. There isn’t a single dull day at the office. We set up a mixed-format so everyone can either work from home or at the office. We believe that allowing the employee to decide helps a lot in terms of stress and anxiety.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Adolfo Delibes: We are the pioneers in Spain as a furniture subscription platform; however, some competitors offer furniture rental but in an old-fashioned way and focused on the short term for events, weddings, and conferences.
Your final thoughts?
Adolfo Delibes: We go towards a Rentership Society. A world of consumption where we can have it all but own none of it.
Rentchester’s goal is to make the whole furnishing process as simple, flexible, and sustainable as it can be.
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