#HerImpact: Closing the Local Service Gap with Tech
Endeavor Entrepreneur Başak Taşpınar Değim reflects on returning to Turkey, becoming an entrepreneur, and scaling Armut.com
Endeavor’s #HerImpact series is part of our ongoing commitment to increase gender diversity within the Endeavor network. #HerImpact is devoted to elevating the voices, sharing the perspectives, and showcasing the professional expertise of women in Endeavor’s global network. Learn more about how you can get involved with Women in High Impact Entrepreneurship at Endeavor here: endeavor.org/whie
I was living in the USA with my family. When we decided to move back to Turkey, I searched for different local service professionals like a painter, cleaner, home improvement experts — but realized there was no efficient way to find good service providers online. When I asked around, I got the same answer from my friends and family. They were struggling as well. I thought, there needs to be a better and easier way to find trusted service professionals using technology.
Armut.com was founded to solve a real-life problem we had experienced. From the first day, we knew that the scalability of the business was crucial. So we started using machine learning and artificial intelligence to deliver a great customer experience.
Starting a marketplace business is really challenging since it takes a lot of time to see the result of network effects. As a bootstrap startup founder, I struggled financially and motivationally in the first years of my entrepreneurship journey.
When we focused on our customers and solving their problems, things eventually started to get better. Our first customers became our advocates and spread the word. Eventually, the business sped up, and we started to see both customer and revenue growth.
Today, we’ve changed how people find local services in Turkey. As a leader in the market, we are converting customers from offline to online. Armut receives around 2 million customer requests each year, from help with everything from moving to wedding organization. We operate three brands across six countries, and list over 300,000 service providers.
I believe as an entrepreneur, one of the most crucial personality traits is embracing change and quickly adapting to it. While we were scaling up the business, we tried many new business models and category structures. During those periods, we spent a lot of time with our team to bring clarity to our mission and goals. The team knew that they are contributing to one big purpose: making our customers’ lives easier with technology. When you have one big mission and your team is motivated around it, success is inevitable.
Başak is the co-founder of Armut.com, the leading local services marketplace in Turkey. Founded with the mission of making it easy to find trusted service providers, Armut.com aspires to be a leading local services marketplace globally.
Armut.com operates across six countries (Turkey, the UK, USA, Romania, South Africa, and Egypt) with three brands (Armut , HomeRun & Rahat Taşın). The platform, helps people across 2,000 different categories with over 300,000 service providers.
Başak was selected as an Endeavor Entrepreneur in 2014, and is supported by the Endeavor Turkey office.