HELLOZACK: HOW TO BECOME A BOOMING STARTUP
Last week, we met Pierre-Emmanuel from HelloZack. He shared his vision of a successful entrepreneurship project with Beeleev. Hope you’ll enjoy the read!
What is HelloZack?
I am Pierre Emmanuel Saint-Esprit, CEO and co-founder of HelloZack. Everything began during a master degree at UC Berkeley. With the other co-founders, we realized that it was easier to buy than to sell on internet. For example, on Amazon, you can buy everything in 1 click. Zack offers an hassle-free solution to sell Apple products. We buy back to consumers and companies: Cash, Anywhere, Anytime.
The first thing we did was to test this idea in the streets of San Francisco. More than seeking to have a great time, we were sure that the idea would meet demand. For 4 months, we continued developing this project, helped by Mark Coopersmith, a senior lecturer in entrepreneurship at Haas Business School in UC Berkeley who shared the essence of his experience with us.
With his useful advices and our great idea, we came back to Paris and continued developing the project at “Numa”, a Parisian incubator. At the beginning, we were generalist rebuyers, but with time we realized that we needed more expertize.
Actually, we chose to focus our business on Apple devices. Since then, HelloZack has significantly grown. As a consequence, we are almost reaching the break-even, which is excellent for a start up with only one year of life. This result was based on the scalability and the expansion of our business. Now our next goal is to develop a B2B offer and conquer European Capitals.
What is your approach to grow internationally?
We expect to expand our business to other cities in Europe such as London, Brussels or Berlin. One of the key advantages of our business is that it is easily scalable. We only need to have dispatch riders and a logistic team per country. This is why we want to grow internationally. To achieve this goal, we forecast to use our network all around Europe. Indeed, we have some French representatives working all over Europe. I think that this is the easiest way for us to find new customers.
Nevertheless, before starting this ambitious development, we target to conquer the French B2B market.
What challenges are identify on the French B2B market?
Logistics is key. Since we are a young startup (we celebrated our 1st anniversary on May) we are working to optimize logistics, but this is a long-term task.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
- #1 Team
“Without a good team your idea has no value.”
During my studies, I learned that Airbnb took 5 months to hire their first employee. At Hellozack we took less time, but the idea was the same. It is hard to be a good recruiter so take your time. Moreover, if you made a mistake don’t hesitate to take a step back even if it’s hard.
- #2 Network
What you need to succeed in France is a good network. With it, you can find investors, partners and also customers. However, if you have no network in France, you can easily develop one in Paris. I know this advice seems obvious but start by looking on Beeleev! There are many great French entrepreneurs on the platform.
- #3 listen to your customers
” “Client is king”, we all know this sentence but this is true. In a B2C business, your clients are those who can kill your start up. “
Listen to your customers and ask for their comments on Google or Twitter. This is exactly what your business need to grow up.
What you wish you knew before starting?
Recruiting is much harder than we could ever imagine. You cannot realize how much time I spend on dealing with a bad recruitment. It took me a lot of time and money. Taking risks is part of entrepreneur philosophy but it does not mean that you should not take the time of decision. As I said before, Airbnb took 5 months to recruit their first employee. So why don’t we copy the best?
Thank you very much Pierre-Emmanuel! HelloZack’s website : http://hellozack.fr/