Fat Lama: The Peer-Rental Site For Stuff
The question of what to do with all that stuff?
In late 2015, Rosie and Chaz left their corporate jobs to gut, refurbish and let out a co-working space in Hoxton. During the eight stressful weeks they spent renovating the space on a shoestring budget, both became increasingly frustrated with their options when it came to tool rental. Their minimal budget was squeezed further as they were forced to buy the necessary tools and resell soon afterwards at a significant loss. Vacuum cleaners, ladders, power tools and tile cutters were rarely available for short-term rental, and when they were, they were a car journey away and invariably inaccessible outside of working hours.
Aware that others nearby likely had the precise tools lying around unused, Rosie and Chaz were inspired to create a working solution to the problem. They met Owen and co-founded Fat Lama, which launched in November 2016 and within weeks had a thousands-strong user base.
An online marketplace: Turning one man’s trash into another man’s treasure
Fat Lama is the marketplace which allows people to rent out their belongings – fully insured – to others nearby. Everyday, we are connecting Londoners who need specific items with lenders in their neighbourhood in need of some extra cash. It doesn’t make sense to us to pay premium rental rates when your neighbours are likely keen to lend it out at sensible rates when you could hire a camera or some gardening gear locally instead. Nor does it make sense that the demand for self-storage facilities is on the increase. Instead of paying money to store what you’ve already bought, why not lend it out and make it pay for itself?
As well as underwriting an insurance policy across all rentals, designing and testing the entire website and user flow and figuring out how exactly the platform would work, the team needed to identify and integrate the perfect payment system. What Fat Lama needed was a payment solution which was incredibly secure and could scale fast. With MANGOPAY, Fat Lama was able to integrate smoothly from an early stage and process a complex payment flow without friction. You can hear more about how Fat Lama uses MANGOPAY by watching the Sharing Economy Toolkit Podcast here.
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