Flopster - the pet lovers community app in the UAE

Creating a community of connected pet lovers

Photo of Laetitia Guidicelli
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I confirm that I am fully aware of the eligibility criteria and terms of the Purina BetterwithPets Prize and, based on its description, I am eligible to apply:

  • Yes, I’m eligible
  • Yes, I’m 18 years old or older

Should you be successful, please confirm your availability to attend:

  • Additional Skype interview(s) during the week of March 16-20th 2020
  • The Purina BetterwithPets Forum in Paris, on 3-4th of June 2020

Initiative's representative name

Laetitia Guidicelli

Initiative's representative date of birth

27031984

Initiative's representative gender

  • Woman

Headquarters location: country

  • UAE

Headquarters location: city

Dubai

Where are you making a difference?

SAME

Website or social media url(s)

Website: www.flopster.com Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6fDwgkHv2MIgDJit-wctUw/about Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/meetpetlovers/ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/meetpetlovers/ LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/30734822/admin/

Date Started

07/2019

Focus Areas

  • Creating a community of connected pet lovers

What is your current yearly budget for the initiative? If you are an idea stage, what early budget you would need to kick-off and run operations in your first year?

  • €100k - €250k

Organisation Type

  • for profit: an organisations whose main goal is to make income through business gains

1. Founding story: Share a story about the "Aha!" moment that led the founder(s) to get started or the story of how you saw the potential for this project to succeed.

I moved to the UAE seven years ago from France. Coming from a very pet-friendly country I was looking for places to be around nature and pets as I was missing having a pet of my own. It was challenging in the UAE to find public places where pets are allowed. I then, decided to throw myself into the dog shelter volunteer work to get that animal connection I was missing. I soon realised that there was a huge pet lovers community in the UAE but that they were not connected or didn't know what the UAE had to offer for them and the pets. This is when I decided to take on the challenge to help build and bring this community together. I now tour around the UAE to explore new places to add to the App! Check my blog: https://www.furrytales.online

2. The problem: What problem are you helping to solve?

The UAE is full of pet owners and pet lovers, a huge audience who isn’t properly connected yet! i.e. People don't know where to start when they first move to the UAE, which are the most recommended vet clinics, where are the dog parks, what activities to do with the pets at the weekend? Can they take pet out for a lunch date? Where are they allowed? Which are the most recommended boarding facilities for my pet to stay when I need to travel...

3. Your solution: How are you planning to solve this problem? Share your specific approach.

Created an app called Flopster that helps you explore the places to experience with your pet around you, ranging from pet-friendly outlets to pet service suppliers, vet clinics, boarding facilities, meet-ups and more! You can find more information about each place on the Flopster App on Android and iOS.

4. Innovation: How are you innovating or using unique approaches to solve the problem?

This is the first app of its kind in the UAE.

5. How does your project harness the pet-human bond to help people develop important social competencies (For example: emotional intelligence, collaboration, empathy, resilience, inclusivity) and overcome serious societal issues (for example: violence, abuse, trauma, isolation, abandonment)?

Making the app users and followers feel part of a community. The Flopsters ! The app allows users to add great finds (places) to the app. So they can actively help contribute to grow the community they are in. They get involved and help Flopster build an eco-system for the pets and their owners. We also help the businesses listed on the app to engage with their audience, the pet owners, via event promotions, special offers, meetups, site tour videos etc. You can check the videos on the Youtube channel: https://youtu.be/7LUsrlB6tOQ

6. Impact: how has your project made a difference so far in terms of both business outputs and social impact? How do you plan on measuring progress?

It has brought a lot of hope within the pet lovers community. People are excited to see that the UAE is actually pet-friendly and that they are part of a bigger community than they thought they were in! People are also loving the vibe of the brand and how we present the places to them via social media, videos and fun elements added to it. Such as video touring the city hunting for pet-friendly places with my dog, Sammy, Flopster's venue sniffer. People feel good and they like the idea of belonging to the Flopster community.

7. Growth strategies: what are your main strategies for scaling your impact?

Exploring more places - creating events and meet-ups of the pet lovers at Flopster places. Helping them find the most recommended places for their pets on the app. Increasing the visibility of the pet industry related places to the Flopster community. It is important to note that places listed on the app go through a reviewal process to make sure they work in an ethical manner. For instance, Flopster will not list on the app businesses such as pet shops selling pets (dogs and cats) as we want to educate people to rather adopt a pet or get their pets from qualified and ethical breeders.

8. Creating shared value: How does your initiative create value for different stakeholders?

We want to show people that pets are actually beneficial to the community - that they bring people together and that they are part of the family. Flopster helps pet lovers have their pet as part of their daily activity lives.

9. Financial sustainability plan: can you tell us about your plan to fund your project and how that plan will be sustainable in the short, medium, and long term?

I have a full time job that helps pay the bills and have launched the business on the side - I am self-funded. The app will bring options to generate revenue via various streams.

10. Team: what is the current composition of your team (types of roles, qualifications, full-time vs. part-time, board members, etc.), and how do you plan to evolve the team’s composition as the project grows?

Just me for now! I will start looking for partners in the future.

11. How do you plan to influence your field of work if you are a winner of this edition of the Purina BetterwithPets Prize?

The prize will help build the brand and grow its credibility. I will help me do more and better for the community. It's only the beginning - the brand is getting some good traction already and has only been on the market for a few months, so I am hopeful it will work out! I want to keep spreading the good vibes to the people who care and love for pets and encourage people you didn't to start caring and become Flopsters!

12. How did you hear about this challenge?

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