ANTOINE MELON: The First Platform Offering Unique and Memorable In-person Experiences at Home From Hand-picked Experts

August 9, 2022

HOMETAINMENT is the first platform offering unique and memorable in-person experiences at home from hand-picked experts.

We are on a mission to change the future of HOME Entertainment! We want to remove the stress of hosting and make you the Host with the Most by providing a wide choice of premium Private Chefs, Drinks, Music, Arts and Crafts & Children’s experiences that our hand-picked expert HOMEtainers will bring to life in the comfort of your HOME.

Tell us about yourself?

I graduated from Ecole Hôtelière de Lausanne (Lausanne Hospitality School) with a Diploma for Higher Studies in Hotel & Restaurant Management. I have gained 27 years experience in the hospitality industry working for lifestyle & luxury brands such as Soho House (UK Director), Six Senses, Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong and Conran Restaurants across 7 countries.

I spent the initial years building my career in Europe & Asia and also speak 4 languages.

My track record consists of opening 18 restaurants in 5 different countries and 4 hotels (The Fife Arms, Sunday Times 2019 Best Hotel in UK, The Ned, Farmhouse and Six Senses Laamu) and improving business performance as well as maximising growth and delivering hospitality and customer services.

During the first lockdown, Nicolas (co-founder), and I wanted to help those in hospitality who were going through the worst ever crisis for the industry to find a new revenue channel.

We felt that from crisis comes opportunity. From a customer standpoint we realised that in the past years people were bringing out of home experiences into the home such as massage, yoga, spinning, movies, etc. and that there was a gap on the market, as no one was offering all categories (food, drinks, music, craft & children’s activities) to create the best home events.

Rest of the team:

Nicolas Payet – co-founder and Advisor
25+ years experience including General Management/CEO role in consumer goods industry.

Mags Payet – Business Development Director
Extensive experience from the Wine and Spirits industry developing brands such as Champagne Piper Heidsieck and Louis XIII within 5 Star hotels, restaurants and Private Members Clubs. Founded her own BtoC start up company in 2012 manufacturing and distributing jewelry and accessories.

Sandro Batista – Partner and CTO
15+ years of C-level experience in software companies. Co-founded Focus BC, Enterprise EMEA Google Partner and local Director of Silicon Valley’s Founder Institute. Delivery manager of technological projects for UN, UEFA, FIFA, etc. and also Product manager of Mapify.ai.

Tom Stanley – Accounting and Financial Advisory – Investor
Arnault Thouret – Advisor. Tech sector and Innovation
Olivier Thooris – Advisor. Tech sector and Innovation

If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?

I would focus on the B2B2C as we quickly realised that the D2C is time consuming and has a high cost of acquisition.

What problem does your business solve?

Are you finding busy venues stressful and hectic in a post-covid world?
→ Our HOMEtainers come to you, in the comfort of your own HOME.

You have a very busy schedule and little to no time to host your friends and family at HOME?
→ Our HOMEtainers take care of everything and bring the experience to life for you and your guests at HOME, so you can just relax and enjoy the moment.

You are struggling to come up with ideas to impress your guests or want something unusual for a special occasion?
→ With over 150 experiences ranging from Private Chefs, Mixologists, Music experiences, Arts and Crafts & Kids experiences, there is plenty to choose from on HOMETAINMENT.com

You want to enjoy the experience but would also like to participate and learn something along the way?
→ Every experience available on HOMETAINMENT.com has been designed to allow you and your guests to take part and learn if you wish to do so.

What is the inspiration behind your business?

Our business was inspired by realising a few years ago when I was trying to organise a housewarming party that there was no platform on the market to book a bartender & a chef to create the best experience for my friends and I.

We have two types of users:

  • HOMEtainers: experts we have handpicked who are looking for a new revenue channel who are targeting the AT HOME market.
  • Clients who want to create Living Memories, don’t have the time to organise a house party and via HOMEtainment can become the Host with the Most.

What is your magic sauce?

More than 150 curated unique and memorable experiences in 5 categories: Food, Drink, Music, Arts & Crafts and Children’s Activities from 75 hand-picked experts.

What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?

Our vision is to bring back the magic of Hosting at Home, bringing together friends and family, enjoying memorable experiences in a safe and comfortable environment – the HOME.

We have planned an expansion using 2 models: own affiliates as well as franchising.

Own affiliates: our plan includes opening Paris in 2023, then New York and 1 more European city in 2024, and each year after that 1 US city and 1 European city. By 2030 we plan to operate 11 cities with our own affiliates and our own people.

Franchising: in parallel to opening our own affiliates in major cities we are finalizing a franchising model study by leading company Franchise Management who have helped renowned high street brands with their franchising model.

Revenue will come from upfront one-off payment as well as a recurring fee as % of revenue.

Despite our franchising model being a WIP, we have signed with one of our investors a territory reservation contract for Switzerland with an agreed upfront payment.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?

Our biggest challenge so far has been to scale up. We have steady business on a monthly basis thanks to our strategic partnerships, however we need to scale up to get to the volume we require for making the business a great success.

Hence the reason we are recruiting an Business Development Executive to support us in increasing the number of partnerships we have with concierge companies and luxury real estate management companies.

Thanks to the success of our crowdfunding campaign we will use the funds to invest in marketing to grow the brand, target our audience, develop our existing technology and recruit.

How do people get involved/buy into your vision?

We want:

  • Concierge companies to work with us to create Living Memories for their members
  • Luxury Real Estate management companies to collaborate with us to bring to life their beautiful spaces for the benefit of their residents
  • Co-working spaces to offer our OFFICE experiences to their members to foster team building and encourage staff back to the office
  • Fairs organisers to list HOMETAINMENT as partner of choice to their exhibitors who want stand out from the competition

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