Gian Franco Rojas, CEO at Viutify tells us how it offers everything that a beauty salon needs.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Gian Franco Rojas: Thank God my direct family is in good health, but I have had relatives who died from Covid last year.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Viutify.
Gian Franco Rojas: I studied marketing and finished my degree 11 years ago and about 5 years ago. I did a specialization in Sales Management.
In 2012 I joined a company specialized in mobile marketing where I learned about Value Added Services working with telephone operators. This helped me know a lot about mobile applications as well, and by 2015, there were some successful startups in Peru. This made me want to be the CEO of my company. It took me almost 6 months to analyze the Peruvian market to identify a business opportunity based on my experience: technology.
How does Viutify innovate?
Gian Franco Rojas: Viutify is a management platform focused on beauty salons, where they have software in the cloud, an app for salon workers, and an app for clients, where they can make reservations and pay for them online or in the salon from the app
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Gian Franco Rojas: Last year, Peru went into quarantine for almost 2 months without being able to go out. Over time they began to activate business areas, and the beauty salons were able to start working almost 3 months after the confinement. This meant that Viutify had no income for 3 months, but this made us continue to innovate in order to help beauty salons to continue operating, but above all, because the attention began to be with reservations, something that only 5% of salons they worked in this way prior to the pandemic. In Peru, before the virus, there were almost 45,000 salons. Unfortunately, the pandemic caused almost 15,000 beauty salons to go bankrupt.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Gian Franco Rojas: Well, thank God I didn’t have to make difficult decisions. On the contrary, I had to make decisions to improve Viutify and its growth. How I do rescue is by being focused on getting subscriptions for the platform, I looked at the internal data for our clients, where we detected that in 2019, we had almost 45 clients, and nearly 15 million dollars had been billed only with credit and debit card. If we had seen it in time, we would have launched new solutions on the market as we are doing right now.
What specific tools, software, and management skills are you using to navigate this crisis?
Gian Franco Rojas: Well, we are currently using platforms like Slack and Jira, but we have already been using the Gsuite platform for 4 years.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Gian Franco Rojas: There are a regular number of platforms for beauty salons, but very few offer solutions for everyone involved, such as software, apps for workers, or even clients. We offer that, and we are going to launch other solutions. We have an alliance with Revlon Professional because they have seen in us a platform that they have not seen in Europe or the USA, and if there is, it does not have everything we have.
Your final thoughts?
Gian Franco Rojas: An entrepreneur has to be resilient and never lose faith. He has to work very hard, put passion into what he does but above all, love what he does.
www.appviutify.com (app for clients)
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