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Female Entrepreneur: Coraline Joveneaux & Clara Kanner – Owners of Bed & Chai Guesthouse

Picture usCoraline Joveneaux and Clara Kanner – Owners of Bed & Chai Guesthouse

Naora Hospitality Pvt Ltd

Tell us about yourselves

We are two French women living in Delhi for the last five years. Coraline is engineer and Clara went to business school. Coraline was working as a country manager for a quality control company in textiles, and Clara was a communications coordinator for Veolia Water India. Two years ago, we decided to set up our own business in Delhi.

Tell us about Bed & Chai Guesthouse

We set up our first guesthouse in July 2012. We noticed a lack of inexpensive, clean guesthouses in South Delhi. Our target market is tourists with a mid-range budget and young travellers who do not want to stay in Paharganj, a hotels area for backpackers. Many of our guests are young women travelling alone.

We opened another guesthouse in 2013 in partnership with the NGO ESCIP. This guesthouse is for long term stay.

Bed & Chaï Masala gives them support in two ways:

  • A portion of our benefits is given every month to the NGO and we hired one of the residents
  • Our guests take their breakfast in the NGO’s living room where they can meet the occupants. It is the way for our clients to interact with the NGO and to volunteer if they want to.
bed-and-chai-room2Why did you set up the company?

Coraline participated to the setup of her previous company in China and liked to be her own manager. Clara has always wanted to start her own business. Working previously for three years in Delhi in the private sector allowed us to save some money to start this adventure.

What has been your biggest challenge in achieving your success?

Managing the authorities and paperwork is not always easy in India…

What has been your greatest achievement so far?

To see our guests satisfied and coming back to our guesthouse!

Don’t think too much before taking a decision and don’t listen to the sceptics. You can do it!

bed and chai2Who has been your biggest inspiration?

For Coraline, it is her previous manager, Alexandre Godvin, who started his business just after finishing school and now, after seven years is the owner of three successful companies.

For Clara, she has entrepreneurs in her family and she met several French successful entrepreneurs in Delhi.

How do you balance your work life and home life?

We are both single so it is quite easy to manage. We finally have normal weekends off after one a half years. Distance with family in France is more complicated to manage.

What advice do you have for women starting out on their own?

Don’t think too much before taking a decision and don’t listen to the sceptics. You can do it!

bed-and-chai-room1Can you recommend any organisations or networking groups that have particularly helped you on your journey?

We have a group of entrepreneurs in Delhi, www.cefi.in, open to French speaking people.

If you could ask for one thing to help propel your business what would it be?

A good contact in MCD (Municipal Corporation of Delhi)!

What does the future hold for you?

We hope to open a new guesthouse, probably in Gurgaon for business travellers.

Bed & Chai Guesthouse

Address: R-55, Greater Kailash-1, Top floor, 110048 New Delhi – India

bed and chai3Phone: + / +

Email: [email protected]

Skype: bedandchai

Web: www.bedandchai.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Bedandchai

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BedandChai

Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+BedCha%C3%AFGuestHouseNewDelhi


About Coraline Joveneaux

I am a 32 year-old French women from Lille. I studied engineering in electronics. I did my last year in Madrid thanks to the Erasmus program and started to like travelling and living abroad. A friend of mine suggested that I participate in the set up of his company of quality control in Shanghai, China. After 2 years working there, I decided to go back to Madrid to work as an international buyer. The same friend asked me to be country manager in Delhi and I moved back to Asia.

About Clara Kanner

I am 29 and I am from Lille as well. I started living in London when I was 18 and did many long trips abroad after that for my studies and holidays (UK, Canada, India…). I decided to settle in India after a one year internship with a French consulting company in New Delhi. I went back first to France to finish my business school course (Skema Lille) and I came back to Delhi for a two-yeas contract in communications for Veolia Environment.

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