Start-ups know very well the importance of adapting, especially in times of crisis. These last few months have been challenging for entrepreneurs and have forced many of them to severely revise their business plan. Nevertheless, some start-ups did manage to keep their business going, through production transformation or innovation. One of the companies incubated at Cilex has had to adapt by accelerating their production timeline.
Airbrowz has developed a location-based mobile application that enables businesses to promote their goods and services while also giving consumers the opportunity to discover what makes their region unique.
We met up with Carole Lair, one of the company’s cofounders, to learn how her team faced this crisis.
“The crisis has accelerated our implementation plan, innovation and turn around to meet the needs of [the] situation, whilst maneuvering within [our] business model.”
The COVID-19 pandemic hit just as Airbrowz was about to launch the second version of their app – a version which focuses on user experience to make the app more accessible to more people.
While the team’s plans were disrupted, they were not stopped. They rolled up their sleeves and quickly identified the emerging needs of Outaouais businesses – maintaining operations through online sales and local purchasing. In fact, Airbrowz already had plans to add an online sales option to its mobile app this year. The team reviewed their priorities and pushed this feature to the top of the list.
The importance of a risk management plan
“We were incredibly surprised with the speed [with] which all this occurred. There was very little time to adjust and prepare, very little indication [that] a crisis like this could ever happen. It impacted across the world.”
The company started with an advantage when it came to adaptation thanks to its risk management plan. As seasoned entrepreneurs, the Airbrowz management team knows that markets and economic conditions can shift very quickly. This is why their risk management plan focuses on identifying changes affecting their target market, SMEs and their client’s financial situation.
The key to success is to stay positive
“As entrepreneurs, we believe that you need to look on the positive side of things, remain steadfast, stay focused. Perseverance, consistency, hard work, the ability to change [and] adapt to unforeseen situations can only serve one well.”
By identifying the real needs of their customers and focusing on their goals, Airbrowz has been able to move forward. The team has even grown with the hiring of some new staff!
The Airbrowz app can be downloaded for free through Google Play and Apple Store.