Ans: Quite simply, we do house calls for pets. We are located in Chicago and serve he City as well as the Northshore. A lot of pets (and their guardians) experience high anxiety at the animal clinic, resulting in some pets not getting enough care. Our veterinarians are experienced and equipped to provide most of the required services right in the home, avoiding both anxiety and painful logistics! Our customers book us through an easy to use app.
Q 2. Kindly give us a brief description about yourself (it should include your brief educational or entrepreneurial background and list some of your major achievements).
Ans: I have spent my career in the corporate world, working on infrastructure projects in the water and energy sectors, and doing mergers and acquisitions – in other words, nothing that prepared me to be a tech entrepreneur in the pet care sector! But I have a business background, and I have always had an entrepreneurial bug. A couple of years ago I decided that it was time to act on it.
Q 3. What inspired you to (start a new business venture) or (to make significant changes in an existing business)? How did the idea for your business come about?
Ans: I grew up in France, where you can get a doctor house call. When I moved to the US (in 1992) I was surprised that this service was not available here, and I thought “someone” should do something about it. It took me a while but I finally decided that someone should be me. And as we know, “healthcare is complicated,” so I thought I could have more of an impact on pet care – improving the healthcare system for our best friends!
Q 4. What three pieces of advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
Ans: Identify the skills you do not have, and work with people who can bring them; define a realistic objective and be prepared to adjust it as you learn more; and be patient!
Q 5. What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?
Ans: All new ventures need at least two things: a good idea and the ability to manage it into existence. An idea without a plan is not a venture, and every plan needs a good idea. So the primary two skills I would think of are creativity and management. And the third skill is the ability to recognize your weaknesses so you can partner with people who can do it with you!
Q 6. How many hours do you work a day on average?
Ans: I would say an average of 10, both on VetSpotting and on other things I am interested in!
Q 7. To what do you most attribute your success?
Ans: I will let you know when I recognize it! The definition of success is very fluid when you are an entrepreneur. I will say that perseverance has gotten me this far, so I will go with that.
Q 8. How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?
Ans: I have been doing presentations to pet-friendly retirement homes with some of our veterinarian partners, and we are also developing a strong digital marketing campaign that I hope will make our service known in the Chicago area very soon. Our challenge is that we are not just trying to get people to know VetSpotting: we are also trying to make people aware of the option of getting a veterinarian house call, which is not a service most people even know is available.
Q 9. Where did your organizations funding/capital come from and how did you go about getting it? How did you obtain investors for your venture?
Ans: So far, it is all self-funded! I have been working off my savings, which is a scary proposition for anyone but has also allowed me to prioritize and focus on what is important. It helps that my wife has been very supportive. We are only at the beginning, and once we can demonstrate that the idea works we will go for venture capital.
Q 10. What is the best way to achieve long-term success?
Ans: The true answer is that I do not know – yet! But my plan is to be customer focused at all times. I have to hear the customers when they tell me VetSpotting could do something different or offer an additional service.
Q 11. Where you see yourself and your business in 5 – 10 years?
Ans: I hope we will be offering house calls beyond Chicago! And I can also imagine we will be offering many services in addition to house calls.
Q 12. Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?
Ans: I am not sure if it qualifies as a business, but I volunteer at Chicago’s Anti-cruelty Society, and I admire their mission and the way they take care of Chicago’s pet population.
Company : VetSpotting
Contact : Harald Jensen
Address : 222 Merchandise Mart Plaza, Suite 1230
City : Chicago
State : IL
Zip : 60654
Phone : 312-625-2696