Coffee with the Cohort: in conversation with Hugo Gervais, CEO of Urbest

What’s the story behind Urbest?

I co-founded Urbest with a friend.

What have been the highlights that really stand out for you and Urbest?

I can’t say that there’s been one huge highlight. For me, the highlights are more in the form of the small victories which led to us being known & recognised, like moments when we’ve signed with major clients — so for example when we started working with the Normandy region which is now one of our flagship clients.

What’s next for Urbest?

Obviously expanding internationally. We already see ourselves as an international start-up though. We’re an international team, we have people from 7 different nationalities in our team of 13, we work in English and approach business with an international mindset.

How are you finding the Impact programme so far?

Really positive. We’ve already had results and activity from Impact! We’ve partnered with 2 of the mentors out of the 10-or-so that we spoke to during the Learn and Dive module, and we’re in further discussions with 2 other mentors. We have about 10 meetings lined up, so already seeing some really worthwhile results.

What piece of advice would you give a founder now that you wish you knew when you started Urbest?

My advice would be to be more selective about the people you approach. Talking to people who need Urbest as much as we need them is a must-have to build strong and growing business relationships.

How do you see the property and real estate landscape changing as a result of COVID-19?

It’s going to be interesting. I think it will certainly accelerate the way people use platforms and tech in general, especially as people are now much more used to being able to communicate remotely. I think we’ll see people and companies cutting down on gatherings and meetings, for example.

Where do you see yourselves this time next year?

In Paris or London, signing some big contracts!

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