Posted on Jan 3, 2022 at 7:00 amUpdated Jan 3, 2022, 9:37 AM
“I have never been very scholar. After my college diploma, my father recommended that I do a BEP in the hotel industry, telling me that at least it was a sector that was recruiting. This course did not thrill me. My diploma in hand, I preferred to work rather than pursue studies in another direction. I did odd jobs: wine delivery man, order picker, worker on a potato sorting line, waiter …
When I was 18, I started a mission in a hotel of the Accor group, in Cavaillon (Vaucluse), for a replacement. I was a diver and a cook. I felt good there. The hotel was located over a thirty minute drive from my home, so instead of coming back between lunch and dinner, I stayed there to train in other things. Eight months after my arrival, I became a chef. Then, technician, and then, receptionist. I was jack-of-all-trades, motivated, and that allowed me to stand out.
When I was 22, I was promoted to deputy director of an Ibis in La Défense. A pride for me. Almost two years later, I was called back to become manager of the hotel where I had learned my skills, in Cavaillon. Then, I followed my former managing director of this establishment, and together we integrated Valmavi, a holding company of seventeen establishments (eleven hotels of the Accor group and six restaurants).
At 27, I became director of operations. My mission: to optimize the services and organization of establishments, and to monitor investments and renovations. An exciting, stimulating, comfortable position with great responsibilities.
A project born within the personal framework
An idea came to me in December 2021. I made a commitment to my wife to buy our daughter's Christmas present. But with the job, it got a little out of my mind. Result, I found myself on December 23 looking for this gift, in vain.
It was out of stock in the store. I found it on LeBonCoin, new and in packaging, but in Tours. Impossible to have it delivered for the next day. It was frustrating because I told myself that there must be dozens of motorists driving between Touraine and Avignon. But how do you find them? From there my idea of a long-distance carpooling application for parcels sprouted.
This project stuck in my head on a daily basis. I was sure it would be really helpful, I had proof of that at work. Example: a hotel called me to tell me that the coffee machine for breakfast was broken, and that it had to be replaced urgently. Another, new, was stored in one of our hotels 200 kilometers away. In this kind of situation, I often found myself going back and forth just to bring in a product. I told myself that a number of cars were running empty and that we could certainly make their journeys profitable.
Deliveries within a radius of 30 km
During the first confinement, I matured this idea and contacted a local representative of English Tech. I was recommended to think less, to think local rather than national at the start. So, I arrived at the current concept of Tut Tut: allowing businesses of all sizes to deliver their customers instantly within a radius of 30 km around the place of purchase, thanks to individuals who offer to be couriers.
I negotiated a conventional break in June 2021, then I opened my box immediately. Thanks to my savings, funding from the Entreprendre et Initiative networks and BPI London, I was able to launch the application in April 2021.
Initially, the offer was aimed at local shops (wine merchants, florists, etc.). Very quickly, he interested the national brands. Their objective: to replace “click and collect”, which requires the customer to go to the store, with “click and delivery”, which allows home delivery.
How it works ? A professional or individual requests a race on the application. A notification is sent to the couriers in the area. The first to accept the race does so. The price of shipping depends on the size of the package and the distance to be traveled. The prices vary between 9 and 60 Pounds.
Since November 2021, we have been allowing individuals to request all kinds of transport assignments. Go look for a product purchased in a store that is not affiliated with Tut Tut, on a sales site between individuals such as LeBonCoin or an object forgotten at the office. To summarize, couriers are useful to those who do not have the time or do not have the right vehicle.
We have nearly 10,000 couriers active throughout London. We thought that it would mainly interest students, to make some money, but ultimately, we have all types of profiles. Some deliver by bicycle, others by scooter, car or van. 70% of the cost of the race is theirs. The rest is used for the operation and development of Tut Tut. We want this to be an income supplement, not a full-time job. Couriers are therefore limited to 500 Pounds in earnings per month.
In my previous positions of responsibility in the hotel industry, I have always had the mentality of an entrepreneur. However, I had job security, I made a very good living, I had a company car. In short, I was serene. Launching my start-up asked me to take risks. I mortgaged my house to get credit. I knew I had no right to mess up.
Today, I am confident about the future of the company. At the beginning of January 2022, we are twenty employees. We have raised 940,000 Pounds from private investors, banks and BPIs, in particular to hire and meet the demand of supermarkets. I would like to raise funds again this year, with a view to opening the service in other European cities. And, also, to launch my initial idea of long distance delivery. “
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