GET LOCAL, an innovative startup and active STARTUP CAMPUS Business Growth participant, has developed a great concept: Letting locals show you the best places to hang out in their city.
We have news for you from Business Growth, the STARTUP CAMPUS training course.
Currently, the founders of an exciting startup initiated at RUNWAY, the startup incubator at ZHAW, are developing their business idea as Business Growth participants. The team from GET LOCAL is well on the way to creating what many young entrepreneurs dream of – making their own idea a reality and gaining a foothold in the market as quickly as possible. By participating in our STARTUP CAMPUS training program, they are accelerating their way towards a successful business, consolidating their growth strategy, and getting ready to pitch their project to potential investors.
What’s it all about? GET LOCAL is a startup tourism company founded in October 2015 which sets out to present a new city from its most attractive and perhaps most unusual side by deliberately avoiding the standard range of tourist activities. With GET LOCAL, you wander off the beaten track while insiders show you the ‘in’ places to be. It doesn’t matter whether you are going on a business trip, planning a city break, or discovering a big city for the first time. With GET LOCAL, your next city break is sure to be an unforgettable experience!
GET LOCAL satisfies a fundamental requirement of all city travelers. But how did it happen? We met Stefan Neukom, one of the founders of the startup, and asked him about the idea and their exciting plans for the future:
How does it work? By booking into a GET LOCAL partner hotel, the guest receives an e-mail and/or a personal code at check-in to access offers and benefit from exclusive packages and discounts on numerous services. During the stay, the GET LOCAL network can be used by guests to make reservations at popular restaurants or be added to the guest list at famous clubs, events, or concerts – just like a VIP. With GET LOCAL, you’re not just a guest in a new city. GET LOCAL turns your trip into an unforgettable experience.
What is your background? How did you come up with the idea of Get Local?
We are a complementary team with a lot of sales and business development experience, including two members with ZHAW Bachelor’s degrees, one in Journalism and Communication and the other in International Relations. All in all, our team is a great mix, and we can all contribute individual skills in a specific way.
The idea came to us five years ago on a trip to Asia with stop-offs in Hong Kong and Manila. We tried to explore Hong Kong on our own, only to discover that we were totally lost in a big-city jungle. Fortunately, we had an aunt in Manila who devised and then organized an incredibly active program for the week. This meant that we got to know the capital of the Philippines from an entirely different side – that’s to say its real side, away from the tourist trail. We thought how wonderful it would be to have an aunt like this in every big city across the globe – and that’s how the idea of GET LOCAL was born.
What do you want to achieve? What motivates you?
With GET LOCAL, we want to increase the pleasure of discovering new cities and enable city travelers to experience an unknown city like one of its locals. With GET LOCAL you don’t have to feel alone in a strange city. GET LOCAL is like a good friend who is a native of the city and knows the local scene and what’s on – and then takes you there. Our vision is to create great experiences and special moments for city travelers around the world. Each trip should be linked to unique experiences.
Are you working on your idea full-time or just part-time? How do you handle the workload?
Currently, two team members are working full-time and one part-time on this venture. We’re putting a lot of energy and passion into our startup, and we meet regularly in the startup incubator RUNWAY to work on the project and deliberately take only short breaks – but we’re looking forward to some longer time-out periods in a few years from now.
Where do you want to be in three years?
Looking towards world domination! J… or at least having an established concierge service at premium hotels not only in Zurich but in five other major cities in the world – where we can give city travelers unique experiences and some fantastic memories.
How did you go about developing your idea? Do you have any specialist skills?
We spent around six months discussing our ideas with various partners while we were developing the business concept and have continually evaluated and revised it. Above all, we have taken advantage of our personal network of experts and decision-makers from the hospitality industry (hoteliers, tourist boards, restaurants, etc.). Then we made the decision to go ‘all-in’ and from there on to focus on building up the company. An important step was the setting up of an advisory board to acquire the specialist knowledge we didn’t have and to access other networks.
Why should someone be investing in your startup?
That’s simple: Because we do business with passion and integrity!
The founders of GET LOCAL: Wailea, Bruno, and Stefan at the ZHAW RUNWAY business startup incubator.