During the Webrazzi Summit, Remi Onur, Co-founder and CEO at HemenKiralik.com, speaks to us about the startup's interface and future plans. Hemen Kiralik is a Turkey-based online marketplace for short term rental, that helps visitors find apartments for rent with its three interfaces; Turkish, flat4day.com for English, and domiknaden.ru for Russian.
Since its launch in December 2011, the startup has gathered 4500 listings from Turkey on its website. Once a customer books an apartment, the call center calls them soon after for directions. “No one waits for more than a couple of hours,” Onur explains.
In addition to Turkish, English and Russian, the site is also available in Arabic and offers advices about how to find apartments easily in Turkey. Each listing has a clear description that mentions important locations as a reference and the call center is always available for any further help.
When it comes to funding, Hemen Kiralik closed its first round of investment mid-March and a second mid-August. Their investors include Fahri Diner from Sigma Partners in Silicon Valley and Teruhide Sato from Japan, who is the CEO of netprice.com.
The site is planning to close a third round of investment in March or April 2013 and they are primarily focusing on Turkish domestic markets since they have around 27 million tourists and 26 million locals. Onur explains that the Turkish rental market value adds up to US $12 billion, because Istanbul and Antakya attract lots of tourists yearly.
So because there is a huge potential in Turkey, the site is not planning to go global at the moment, but may scale in the Middle East once they succeed in appealing to foreign tourists. “We have a big opportunity here", Remi concludes. "We want to excel in the customer service that we present and we believe it will take us to high places."