Fixflo: Rajeev Nayyar
The founder of the online property repair reporting system tells aspiring entrepreneurs to relish the hurdles in business
Name: Rajeev Nayyar
Staff numbers: 1
Date founded: 16/05/2013
Tell us what your business does:
Fixflo makes property repairs for rental properties less frustrating for everyone involved. It uses an online picture based reporting system with automated updates to get the right information to the right people at the right time.
Where did the idea for your business come from?
I had various ideas that involved using technology to improve existing property processes. Fixflo was the concept that struck most deeply with me given my (painful) experience as a tenant and a landlord and it gained the greatest traction in customer interviews.
How did you know there was a market for it?
We undertook a survey of 200 tenants who rent via a property manager and spent months speaking with property managers and landlords. Only when we had fully researched the needs of customers and existing products did we start to build Fixflo.
What were you doing before starting up?
I was a property lawyer in London and New Zealand. When I returned to London I knew that I wanted to stay in the property sector but not to continue as an advisor.
Have you always wanted to run your own business?
Absolutely. I went through the professional route to round out my skill set and to get a better understanding of business and now feel equipped for the challenges of running my own start-up.
How did you raise the money?
Fixflo is very lean. It is self funded (by me and my business partner) and by far the greatest investment has been our work and time. We should be profitable in the next three weeks and will be looking for funding towards the end of the year for international expansion.
What challenges have you faced and how have you overcome them?
Our biggest challenge was persuading each participant that Fixflo would be of use to the others. For example, agents saw why they would like Fixflo but were not sure that tenants would etc. We overcame that with the help of early adopters who took on our Beta version and with their support and feedback we have shown that everyone really can benefit.
Describe your business model and how you make money:
We charge our clients a subscription fee based on the number of properties that they manage.
What was your first big breakthrough?
Our first big break was securing a trial with Jones Lang LaSalle which is one of the world’s largest real estate companies. Since then we have signed up some of the biggest chains of letting agents.
What advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
Relish every hurdle that you face as once you have overcome it, it is a barrier to entry for anyone else.
Where do you want to be in five years’ time?
We want to be the standard way in which repairs are reported and resolved in the rented property sector throughout the world.