Carmen Voicu and Mioara Ionescu
“Our success is based on a dedicated team which has a balanced mix of expertise, connections and skills”
A customized experience where a premium concierge company providing lifestyle management services is at your disposal 24/7, 365 days a year is not an utopia. It’s real and it has a name: Consiergo. Carmen Voicu and Mioara Ionescu are the co-founders of this successful business model on the Romanian market since 2011. They have given this exclusive interview about the only local full-service company they are running with international partners from Monte Carlo, London, Miami, Madrid and New York, so here it is!
How did you come up with the idea of Consiergo? Was the Romanian market ready for this luxury approach?
Carmen Voicu: In 2011, there were no such services for premium clients. We saw them as a necessity to complement the private banking segment but also to enhance customer retention and loyalty for established companies. The lack of personalized consultancy and quality assistance in the country was obvious.
We began with researches, of course, external market case studies and interviews with potential Romanian clients. The idea of having at your disposal a well trained team in multiple disciplines (lifestyle, home, medical assistance, travel, event management) 24/7 who can take charge of lots of requests based on a yearly package was something new but hard to understand. Especially the habit of paying for quality expertise, confidentiality, quick access to exclusive experiences and more.
We’ve worked hard on educating the market and being relevant to each client. But we’ve reached that point where w are the most experienced team in the field!
You promote distinct types of concierge packages: personal, corporate, residential and auto. How did you identify this categories of clients?
Carmen Voicu: Concierge services are tied to habit and customer loyalty, of the precise care manifested by big companies towards their main clients. Studies showed that these details matter greatly in the retention of employees or collaborations. We become the unique touch point between businesses and key people who have different kind of emergencies in the lives.
We’ve started we the families segment – these people were receptive to the concierge services and knew the concept from abroad. The expats are familiar with the industry and are used to pay in order to gain access to these services. Simply put, we offer more time, we save costs and give access where everything seems closed.
This year you’ve embraced the auto segment.
Carmen Voicu: We are so happy that we can announce our partnership with Automobile Bavaria. It’s the first company which offers full-service concierge packages for certain top clients. There are 2 years of personal assistance provided by Automobile Bavaria for lifestyle, home and travel 24/7.
What was the most difficult moment business wise?
Mioara Ionescu: Like any novelty, the hardest part was educating the consumer. The market was not familiar with the concierge concept at all. It took us time to discuss it, to convince people of the good things it brings.
What’s the happiest moment you have had since the launch of Consiergo?
Mioara Ionescu: I’d say that this revelation came after four years of hard working when the market accepted us and we started having more and more requests from renowned companies and families. At the beginning, a lot of customers tested our ability to cope with difficult tasks by sending us requests that seemed impossible to solve. But we took everything as a challenge. Some demands look eccentric, some are emotionally impactful, but we found great satisfaction in helping them all in the shortest time possible.
Do you intend to diversify your services or your offer is tailored already to the needs of this market?
Carmen Voicu: Our activity is perfectly dynamic. Consiergo’s short term strategy is to enter on the telecom market as expats suggested us from their experience in other countries.
What does success mean in a concierge firm? What are your advantages versus your competition?
Carmen Voicu: The competitive advantage is the background, our experience in România, the hundreds of requests we solved in 6 years, the positive feedback coming from the client companies and families we serve daily. Our success is based on a dedicated team which has a balanced mix of expertise, connections and skills.
Consiergo – Essential for a beautiful life
Interview by: Andrei Dimulescu
Photo: Aurel Șerban
Styling: Rosalie Kanda
Make-up artist: Ana Maria Barbu
Hairstylist: George Istratie
Location: Galeriile Noblesse