Chiara Fraser - Co-founder & Brand Manager Her Roomies
About Chiara Fraser
My name Is Chiara, I am 32 years old and I am half Italian and half English. I have traveled the world and lived in many different countries including Italy ,Spain, Indonesia, UK and the UAE. I have a background in events and creative concept development – with a true passion in creating unique community experiences that bring people together in a meaningful way that can add value to peoples lives.
What is your company all about?
Her Roomies is the FIRST and ONLY accommodation rental platform designed for HER. Her Roomies’ aim is to accompany HER through a full lifetime rental journey and experience.
Built around HER needs when looking for and moving into new home, Her Roomies offers a safe, female-focused rental ecosystem and community with a varied range of rental offerings catering to HER every need; these include rooms in shared apartments, private apartments, co-livings and student residences – all HER accommodation needs are met on one platform. Female tenants can also find a number of different add-on services and tools which enhance their rental experience and allows Her Roomies to offer a unique rental solution for women. It’s the first of its kind.
How did you come up with the idea/concept for your business?
A personal experience when searching for a home, highlighted a huge gap in the market and a need for a platform like Her Roomies. After the frustration of jumping from website to website, I decided I wanted to create something that women could trust and count on and that moved them away from being “just a filter” on a generic site, to being the main protagonists with all their needs in mind.
Why did you choose to set up a business in Barcelona?
Barcelona is the perfect hub, with a great demographic which includes international and local students, digital nomads, young entrepreneurs and more. It has a great number of females both local and international who could use the platform. It has the perfect landscape to launch a platform like this, where marketing testing can be easily conducted to engage and identify different target groups as well as rental typologies. The co-founders of Her Roomies live in Barcelona and love it here – they are proud to be “made in Spain”
If you hadn’t relocated to Barcelona, would you have set up the same type of company in your home country?
Absolutely! Her Roomies has a global reach and meets female tenant needs in any market. It is highly scalable and unique and I would have launched Her Roomies in any country I was based in.
How do you market your business and which strategies have been the most successful?
Various methods including social media and google ads. However one of the most important ways has been through word of mouth, as the community and ecosystem we offer as a platform does not exist on any other platform and therefore females and landlords appreciate and love it.
How do you build a successful customer base in Barcelona?
It’s important to understand your customers needs and be able to offer solutions which differentiate you as a brand. Building a successful customer base in Barcelona is done through marketing the brand with authenticity and ensuring the brand can be trusted.
Is Covid19 affecting your business and if so, how do you deal with this?
As a rental platform, mobility is key, therefore Covid-19 has of course affected our business, with restricted mobility the need for rentals is affected.
Is it mandatory for you to speak Spanish and/or Catalan as an Entrepreneur in Barcelona?
It’s always helpful.
What advice would you give someone who is interested in starting their own business in Barcelona?
I would say be patient and ensure you are being as transparent and honest as possible. The business rhythm here is a little different to other cities in the world but you have to adapt, be strong and don’t give up!
Do you have any additional comments to share with us?
As a woman entrepreneur I find it extremely interesting to navigate the business landscape here in Barcelona, a place which has so much tradition and yet is breaking the mold in so many ways by opening up opportunities for so many entrepreneurs and businesses. I meet strong women and business owners everyday who inspire me and who are achieving incredible things. I am extremely proud of Her Roomies and what is offers as a platform and the important social shift it is bringing to the proptech offering. For the first time, women have a safe space they can turn to no matter where they choose to live.