First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Veronica Tribolati: We are trying to do our best to adapt, stay positive, and maximize our efforts where we can.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded HelloGuest.
Veronica Tribolati: I have been an equity trader for 15 years and decided on a career change. I saw an opportunity and space in the market over 6 years ago when the short letting market was still not as saturated as it is today. Airbnb was growing rapidly, and there were very few Airbnb management London agencies providing full services to Airbnb hosts.
We are one of the few independent short let and Airbnb management companies in London and the UK. We started offering Airbnb management services and short letting just in London zone 1 and 2, and now we cover all of the UK and some selected locations abroad. We also extended our property management services to provide a complete rental solution offering short, medium, and long term letting management services.
How does HelloGuest innovate?
Veronica Tribolati: We do have a very slim agile structure with professionals working for us in all of the UK and abroad. We offer a completely tailor-made service for our clients, and we do operate on a multi-platform approach to maximize exposure for our clients. We try to be as flexible as possible to adapt to owners’ needs and the changing demands of the marketplace.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Veronica Tribolati: We had to review and cut our expenses where possible in response to a decrease in occupancy rates due to lockdown. We amended our booking terms to make cancellations more flexible and encourage longer stays.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Veronica Tribolati: If you are a business owner, you have to make decisions every day, and if you want to have a successful business to adapt as quickly as possible. The lesson I have learned is to be extremely focused and determined in order to achieve your goals.
How do you deal with stress and anxiety?
Veronica Tribolati: Rationalizing, planning, and always have a plan B ready
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Veronica Tribolati: My competitors are Guest Ready, Houst, Pass the Keys and City Relay, but they are not independent as we are. We work in the same field, but the nature of the company is different. We plan to keep doing what we are doing.
Your final thoughts?
Veronica Tribolati: Despite the current difficult situation, I am extremely positive about the future of the market.