Tipaw

Tipaw is an internet platform to help people find a dog from a responsible shelter / breeder.

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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

Pierre Moens

Initiative's representative date of birth

7061993

Initiative's representative gender

  • Man

Headquarters location: country

  • Belgium

Headquarters location: city

Brussels

Where are you making a difference?

Currently in Belgium.

Website or social media url(s)

http://tipaw.com https://www.facebook.com/TipawBelgium/ https://www.linkedin.com/company/tipaw/

Date Started

June / 2017

Focus Areas

  • Enhance physical activity and wellness
  • Enhance well-being of dogs & reduce overall impact of illegal dog trade on society

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
  • hybrid: a combination of different types of organisations, such as a social enterprise (an organisation that applies commercial strategies to maximize improvements in human and environmental well-being)

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.

The idea of ​​creating Tipaw came to Pierre after two important events: First, he watched the cruel film called "Je suis un soldat" directed by Laurent Larivière. This movie reports the puppy trade, coming from the Eastern European countries, and which transits through Belgium. Secondly, searching for a dog himself, he realized the difficulty to find a new companion. In general, the buyer is very badly informed and we are only coming across commercial breeders.

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

Two main problems are : 1) Huge numbers of puppies are coming from puppy mills and are overwhelming the market with advertisements. 2) Impulse purchase: often linked to excessive publicity and a lack of awareness and orientation in the search for a new companion for the future owner.

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

Create a specialized site that has a triple objective: 1) HIGHLIGHTING RESPONSIBLE BREEDERS: All breeders that are members of Tipaw do respect an ethical charter (every breeder is certified). We screen every member of our community for quality and make their practices transparent. In addition, every new dog owners do have the opportunity to review the breeders based on their personal experience. 2) MAKE FUTUR DOG OWNERS AWARE: We wish to help future masters to choose a breed suiting their needs and environment. Therefore online questionnaires are made available. We do everything to avoid impulsive purchases. 3) HIGHLIGHTING RESPONSIBLE SHELTERS: We work with shelters to help maximize adoptions. By offering them more visibility, we hope to help them quickly find homes for each dog. Together we can put an end to unethical practices and give all dogs a healthy and happy life.

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

1) We are using a unique questionnaire to help people find the right dog. 2) We are providing unique content & filters to help people find the right dog. 3) We are, thanks to technology, offering a very user friendly manner for users to find all the information they need when searching a dog. The platform centralizes every useful information.

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)?

As the European Parliament already stated in February 2016, the illegal puppy trade is not only an animal welfare issue. It is the third most profitable sphere of organized crime within the EU after narcotics and weapons, and a massive public health risk. The puppies are produced under appalling conditions and usually not vaccinated. Many, if not most, carry severe diseases and therefore pose a real threat to animal and human health. Every dog owners knows a dog is like a family member. The situation in which he was bred and raised is crucial and has a tremendous impact on their behavior, well-being and health. Hence it has an important impact on impact on their owners. Therefore, we have developed Tipaw and are making sure to connect future owners with responsible breeders/shelters.

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?

We now have hundreds of thousands of visitors a month on our site in our little country Belgium. Plenty of them are reading our articles and finding a dog on Tipaw. Every breeder on our site says that the quality of the leads are much higher. The breeders being much more responsible too we believe the wellbeing of dogs has increased tremendously. We estimate having reached 5% of the Belgian market (5% of the dogs registered in Belgium in 2019 were "sold" through Tipaw).

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

Geographic spread Investing more in tools to educate people (ex. add AI in our questionnaire). Scale it to other animals where we could have an impact (cats for example).

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

It is really obvious in our situation. By helping people find a dog from a responsible breeder or shelter we are having multiple very positive impact on society. 1) Well-being of dogs obviously 2) Many, if not most, dogs carry severe diseases and therefore pose a real threat to animal and human health too. By limiting the puppy trade we minimize these dangers. 3) People have less stress because having a dog not corresponding their needs OR having health issues (which has a high emotional and financial price for them).

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?

Breeders can advertise freely on our website : Why ? 1) We have put the barrier to entry very low for responsible breeders in order for them to help them compete with commercial breeders. And to unify our forces to have an impact. 2) Not aligned with our ethics/philosophy to take a cut on the "sale" of a dog. We monetize our site by monetizing our community by trying to sell them products or services enhancing the well-being of their dogs (in development). We also earn money by giving pro's (vets, groomers, etc.) access to our community. They pay to be referenced on Tipaw.

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?

3 FTE : - Founder & business developer - Marketing guru - BE Developer 5 Freelancers : - A vet for her knowledge in everything we do - Support for our breeders & verification of them - Support for the pro's (vets) joining our platform - Copywriting & Community Management - FE Developer We also have 4 board members.

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

Scale as fast as possible to have a larger impact.

12. How did you hear about this challenge?

  • Word-of-mouth

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