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September 26, 2016

Zakary Chanou Contemplates Africa with UUU, a concierge serivces company

By Maryanne Njeri Maina

Images courtesy of Piaget, Louis Monet and Louis XIII

UUU, a concierge services company was started in 2003 in Paris, France by Zakary Chanou from Porto-Novo in Benin who later moved to France at the age of nine and has since been based in Paris.

Most of his career was spent working in the cosmetics industry, in the US in business development.

“My professional life didn’t start in concierge, I was in cosmetology, and I worked in a French laboratory. But my work required me to take our clients to the finest restaurants, enjoy the best wines,” explained Chanou. “I decided to create a business to bring the art of living and excellence in in France through concierge services of a luxury level. We book tables at Michelin star restaurants, access to concerts, if you want to hire a private island; we get it all for you.”

To date, UUU has more than twenty thousand partners globally working 24 hours a day, seven days a week, irrespective of the location and the time zone.

“I spent the first year finding the best partnerships and suppliers with hotels, jewelers, private jet companies, airlines, private tailors, and other suppliers. In this business, with this kind of target market, everything has to be very very smooth,” he said. “The next year, we spent it finding customers to ensure that we can provide them solutions through our partnerships and suppliers. We have to keep the DNA of occur company and an elitist approach. We rely on very good Customer Relations Management (CRM) and tailor made services.”

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The business caters to individuals and corporate clients. There are three different service levels in the business.

·         The first level costs 2400 euros per year with access to the concierge services for 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

·         Level two costs 4,800 euros, annually, with 24 hours and 7 days a week concierge dedicated services to a few customers, at a maximum number of 15 people.

·         Level three costs 28,000 euros per year with a dedicated concierge per client only. It includes three experiences per year such as a three star Michelin restaurant experience in your home, dinner with a super star in the location of your choice even if it is a yacht or tennis box seats close to Roger Federer.

 

 

“In 2008, after the Euro cup in 2008, we organized private jets for the football team to relax in Ibiza. We have African clients want to come to Paris via private jet, then we pick them up with a helicopter to a palace to sleep, then we organize private viewing sessions with a jewelry house with the heads of Very Very Important People (VVIP) for the client to shop at their leisure, expounded Chanou. “Other clients want to shop in Hermès after shopping hours. We organize the store to be opened in the evening for them to shop alone and enjoy the experience.

The company currently has more than 8,000 private customers and 200 corporate clients such as private banks, family, offices, financial institutions, oil and gas companies from all over the world.

zakary-chanou
Zakary Chanou
“We have a growing African client base and from research African has at least 28 billionaires, therefore more and more people are becoming wealthier and deserve our services,” detailed Chanou. “We get our clients through referrals and word of mouth from our current clients. Then we do a background check on the proposed client. The next step is to provide the services the client chooses. This service is about service, trust, delivery and the highest quality, finding and providing solutions very quickly.”

Chanou who moved from Benin to Paris at the age of nine, pursued his Bachelors in Science degree and Masters in Cosmetology, and later joined ESSEC School in France where he studied o study my Maters in International Brand Management.

UUU works through partnerships globally, such as through private members clubs, luxury marketing companies and other market relevant firms.

Soon, the company will open an office in Abidjan, Ivory Coast due to the growth in the high net worth individuals based there. UUU is also looking into setting up in Nigeria. South Africa and Kenya.

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