Wed, 1 April 2015
About: Eliana Salvi- Founder of PinkTrotters
Overview: Eliana is an Italian native with a degree in International Management from Bocconi University. She has an insane love for traveling, getting to know new cultures, and internet products. Throughout this interview we learn what drove Eliana to start her entrepreneurial journey and what her company (PinkTrotters) is all about.
How PinkTrotters Started: Eliana was a marketing finance manager for a large corporation prior to starting this company and would work abroad (mainly in: Greece, Denmark, the Netherlands, etc) but soon realized that this was not her future. She was not interested in being involved in the corporate world for the rest of her life. Eliana really wanted to start something online, and do something that incapsulated the passions and talents she possesses. After traveling extensively with her previous job position, Eliana felt there was a need for a place specifically for women to meet up and get together no matter where they are. And so, together, with a friend, Eliana decided to start PinkTrotters.
What is PinkTrotters: (Founded at the end of 2013, and currently incubated by H Farm Ventures.) PinkTrotters is a global online and offline community of contemporary women who meet and share exclusive event and trip experiences, powered by brands. PinkTrotters focuses on fashion, food, arts, and wellness. Women who are interested in these fields of work can network with other women, and share their talents to promote their business at these events.
Challenges: Eliana shares that it has been tough to break into the entrepreneurial world and is much harder than she thought it would be. She has to deal with the bureaucratic and technical side of it. And she also has had to learn how to manage her partnership, and her team. She also has to make a great effort at putting herself out there along with her company. Eliana states that until a company becomes very successful, you are constantly focusing on testing your market, solving problems, and readjusting. It has also been difficult for Eliana to balance her private life with her ever-constant work life.
Getting Funds: Finding investors, especially as a woman proved to be a challenge for Eliana. In Europe, the majority of the investors are men and tend to have an old-school way of thinking when it comes to business. It's been easy for Eliana to pitch her business to brands and partners, but much more difficult to sell her company to investors.
Goals for 2015: During the first year of PinkTrotters, Eliana's company made around 60,000 euros, and she hopes to double her amount for 2015- or make close to 150,000 euros. Eliana also hopes to take more of this company online- she is currently building a platform that will include all of the services offered at their events. It will allow brands and travel partners to directly engage with the PinkTrotters community, and be able to receive funds for those services online.
Advice for Entrepreneurs: Form a team with people who are 100% committed, whether it's a size of only 2 or 3 people, they need to be wholly committed. If not, it's easy to lose a lot of time, energy, and faith in your company. You don't have to wait for the perfect platform, you can start with something simple and then change and improve later.
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