At your Service

News

3 Jul 2019

At your Service

Poon Da Qian, founder and CEO of startup Butler in Suits, shares why he decided to create a housekeeping, hospitality and real estate management service company in Singapore.

CAN YOU SHARE WHAT YOUR STARTUP IS AND HOW IT CAME ABOUT?

Butler is a hospitality and real estate management service company that was founded in 2016 to help busy professionals free up time and enjoy greater convenience by integrating property management and hospitality services into homes, offices and buildings.

The business idea came about as I thought about ways in which people can save time from administrative tasks and chores at home and work. We started out by offering only daily housekeeping service at the beginning, but have gradually added additional services so that Butler becomes the one-stop management service for homes, offices and buildings. Currently, we offer housekeeping, concierge service, property management and maintenance, and more.

WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO START YOUR BUSINESS? HAVE YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO BE AN ENTREPRENEUR?

I believe that entrepreneurship is a difficult but rewarding journey that commands respect for whoever is willing to take part in this endeavour. Mine began when I was 14 years old when my dad was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He passed away within a year, which left my mother alone to run the family’s food and beverage business.

We had 20 outlets and 200 employees, so my mother needed help running the business and making sure that the payroll was paid on time. The situation forced me to become an entrepreneur in order to help sustain my family and the business. Over the next five years, we managed to turn the business around and better yet, grow it significantly.

Then at the age of 18, I opened an American fast food cafe called Martins. I remember feeling down after the first day because I had only sold one serving of french fries to a building cleaner for S$1.50. Luckily, Twitter became extremely popular that time, and I used it to promote

our business. In three months, we were making over S$2,000 a day and over the next two years, we had three outlets in Singapore. When I turned 20, I enlisted for National Service and was posted to the army. I spent some of my free time collecting referral credits on a certain hotel booking platform, which I then used to visit hotels and write reviews on my blog. Soon, I was getting sponsored by hotels in Singapore to write reviews, often getting an insiders’ look at luxury hotels. During those two years in the army, I reviewed over 200 luxury hotels in Singapore and Asia, which taught me all about luxury hospitality and the hospitality industry. It became the genesis for Butler.

The idea and need for Butler only came into place after my stint in the army, when my mother retired. We no longer had a domestic helper at home – which I enjoyed for the increased privacy at home, but hated now that I had to do chores. It occurred to me then – what if I can enjoy the hotel experience at my own home? What if I can have my own privacy and the time to do other things while getting my home cleaned, laundry done, groceries stocked, and home appliances managed automatically – while I’m at work?

The idea of freeing up my time from chores and returning home to do the things I love compelled me to start what is now Butler.

HOW IS IT DIFFERENT?

Butler is the pioneer in bringing five-star hotel quality hospitality service to people’s homes, offices and buildings. At a luxury hotel, you expect all your needs to be taken care of – from your room being maintained impeccably to miscellaneous requests outside the hotel being carried out.

Butler allows customers to achieve this convenience at their home and workplace, while receiving a single invoice for all requested services. Our obsession with providing the highest quality of services and allowing people to free up time created the comprehensive service that Butler offers today.

In essence, we are a one-stop property management service that is obsessed with delivering the highest customer experience for all your requests – which is something that no other business of today offers.

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR LATEST DEVELOPMENTS?

We recently started providing services to serviced apartments and hotels. We entirely manage their housekeeping department and property maintenance, so that hotel and apartment managers no longer have to worry about the service quality of housekeeping or property maintenance. They trust us to deliver housekeeping services of the highest standard, and they are able to spend that time now focusing on building success for their business.

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR BIGGEST CHALLENGES AND HOW DO YOU INTEND TO OVERCOME THEM?

As the company grows faster than ever, the biggest challenge is making sure that we’re not being blinded by success – which would in turn blind us from any risks that we may be exposed to. I intend to overcome them by staying true to our company’s mission – which is creating happiness for people. The first step to achieving that is by ensuring the welfare of our employees and providing an inclusive community for them so that it creates an environment that helps them thrive. We hope to continue creating employment that will uplift labour standards while delivering happiness and convenience to people.

WHAT ARE YOUR FUTURE PLANS?

It is our plan to become a service supplier and manager that ultimately brings greater convenience to people’s lives. We also plan on employing 200 more local employees, for whom we will provide the necessary training to nurture them into workers of the highest standard.

Butler Academy – the inhouse training programme – is designed to instill a sense of confidence and belonging into the industry workers. Last but not least, we are also looking forward to offering our services to more offices and properties in Singapore.

WHAT DO YOU HOPE TO ACHIEVE OVER THE NEXT FEW YEARS?

We hope to expand regionally across Asia and become the leading brand that delivers happiness and convenience to people. By employing people who share the company’s passion and mission in creating happiness, we hope to bring happiness to our customers. Ultimately, it is our goal to build an ecosystem that enriches people’s lifestyles through convenience and belonging.

Butler Singapore– All In One Platform For Hospitality & Real Estate Services

News

27 May 2019

Butler Singapore– All In One Platform For Hospitality & Real Estate Services

Previously known as Butler in Suits, Singapore-based hospitality startup Butler was launched by POON Da Qian in the year 2016. The prime purpose of the startup is to deliver better convenience to busy metropolitans through the integration of hospitality and real-estate management solutions into homes, workplaces, and commercial buildings. The hospitality solutions offered by Butler include services such as laundry and professional housekeeping. With Butler’s service, the need to seek the assistance of different vendors is eliminated as customers get linked to a single professional vendor for management of all their property requirements. At present, Butler is offering its service to more than 200 office managers, property managers, and apartment inhabitants. Butler is putting in plenty of endeavors to boost its revenue to $12 million by the year 2019.

 

Butler Closes Seed Funding To Scale Business Operations

S’pore hospitality startup Butler has closed $540,000 seed funding from existing investors, namely, Emanuele Novi, Vincenzo De Falco, and Massimo Mantero. The startup has labeled this round as the ‘Customer Round’ as the major portion of the investment has come from Butler’s own clients who have financed the startup in their capacity. Speaking of investment utilization, the company will use the seed funding to scale up its business operations in Singapore to be able to provide better services to working urbanites. In addition to that, the new capital will also be used to recruit talented personnel in Singapore such as tech developers, hospitality executives, and hustlers.

 

All  You Need To Know About Butler’s Strategies

Butler is inordinately strategic and practical. Butler’s ultimate goal is to become a distinguished leader in the hospitality sector through the implementation of worker training and welfare. For this very purpose, the startup has established Butler Academy to provide its personnel with the in-house training program of four months for making them more competent and efficient. Upon successfully completing the course and becoming a graduate, workers can secure A1 salary packages along with a multitude of other welfare benefits. The training program launched by Butler has become a runaway success as it has played a crucial role in the amelioration of working standards. Not only that, it has inculcated confidence into workers, thereby making recruitment easier and more effective. With the recent investment, Butler is all set to take its hospitality solutions and real-estate management services to the next level.

Get in touch with the team today. 

S’pore Concierge Service Firm Butler Raises S$700K From Its Customers – To Expand Team Here​

News
7 May 2019

S'pore Concierge Service Firm Butler Raises S$700K From Its Customers - To Expand Team Here

Singapore hospitality and real estate management service company Butler, formerly known as Butler in Suits, has closed a seed round of S$700,000. The funds will be used to scale its Singapore operations and expand its services and recruit talents here. 

Butler is hiring hospitality executives, management executives, hustlers, and tech developers (react native and nodejs). 

CEO Poon Da Qian has dubbed the funding round as the “customer round” as investors include businessman Massimo Mantero, Emanuele Novi, and Vincenzo De Falco, who are all existing clients. 

Butler aims to become a market leader in the hospitality industry through employee training and welfare, the press release stated. 

With the establishment of Butler Academy, the in-house training programme for housekeepers, Butler continues to focus on improving working standards and grooming workers to deliver the Butler standard. 

Upon completion of the four-month training programme, graduates receive market-leading salary and welfare benefits. 

Founded in 2016, Butler’s mission is to help busy urbanites free up time and bring about  onvenience by integrating hospitality and real estate management and services into homes, offices, and buildings. 

Services include housekeeping, concierge, property management, property  aintenance services, and more. 

Butler currently services more than 200 apartment residents, office managers, and property managers. 

According to Da Qian, Butler broke even and achieved profitability in April 2017, and in just a year, revenue grew by 800%. They are aiming to reach $12 million in revenue in 2019, he revealed. 

Mr Mantero, who has been a customer since late 2017, reached out to Butler to invest in them as he saw potential in the service and vision of the company, Da Qian shared. 

“Butler is a revolutionary service company that can transform the hospitality and real estate industry, return time, and enable greater convenience for people and businesses.” Mr Mantero said. The 25-year-old Da Qian added, “This investment will allow us to explore and launch greater services for our clients.”

ButlerInSuits rebrands as it launches B2B product

News

27 February 2019

ButlerInSuits rebrands as it launches B2B product

One cool experience it will launch is a full VIP product for a company’s special clients or guests.

ButlerInSuits, a Singaporean startup that offers a full-suite of housekeeping services, has completely rebranded its corporate properties and is set to launch a B2B service.

Now known as simply Butler, the startup had offered a subscription service to homeowners that they could use to take care of various home care tasks — ranging from more traditional services like housecleaning to a more personalised service that will take care of crazy requests like ‘ticket booking’ or ‘finding the best seafood restaurant in town’.

It also offers property management and concierge services.

The logic behind moving into the B2B world is similar as what motivated them to start the company in the first place.

In September 2016, Butler was started as a weekly home cleaning service to “free up time and return home happy”. In 2019, the rationale is similar but for the corporate world: streamlining work processes to free up extra time for managing business strategy and decision-making.

“We want to help businesses free up time and focus on their work, just as we want our individual clients to free up time and return home happy. This has always been the motto of the company, and we continuously strive to enrich the lives of our clients through personalized services,” said Poon Da Qian, CEO and founder of Butler.

Businesses will be able to subscribe to Butler and have people take care of cleaning, maintaining appliances, managing company events and more. Its full-suite butler experience for corporates means building a complete experience for VIP guests or clients.

The business shift was accompanied by a rebrand of the company name (from ButlerInSuits to Butler) and a website redesign.

Butler requires its workers to through a 200-hour training process before they can take jobs via the platform.