houseoftours.com is setting new milestones

houseoftours.com is setting new milestones
Akif Aziz, General Manager of houseoftours.com

Beaming with confidence, the company has many new heights to scale



by

Ishtiaq Ali Mehkri

Published: Thu 29 Jun 2017, 1:18 PM

Last updated: Sun 9 Jul 2017, 12:17 PM

Breaking new grounds and challenging conventions is at the heart of everything houseoftours.com does. This indestructible passion for excellence makes houseoftours.com stand a cut above. It is a successful entrepreneurship trail from aviation to business consultancy and investments. The company knows the audience, and caters to preferences in a personalised and complimentary manner. This is what provides houseoftours.com the edge over its competitors. 
Excerpts from an interview with Akif Aziz, General Manager of houseoftours.com, who is the brain behind the rise and success story of the company:
Q: From a coveted stint with Etihad Airways to the risky climb of entrepreneurship, can you walk us through pivotal moments of your journey?
The toughest part was deciding to go with entrepreneurship, especially when you are settled in a relatively good job. But then, the heart wants what it wants. The second was to gain the trust of investors and vendors and convince them that houseoftours.com is here to stay. Amid these struggles, the finest and the unexpected part was my team. Each and every member stood by the company during the initial tough days and as a gesture of loyalty they showed towards houseoftours.com, they were given the privilege of becoming stakeholders.
Q: As a business conglomerate comprising seven vastly different businesses, what has been the secret sauce of houseoftours.com?
When we kick-started houseoftours.com in 2006, our motto was simply to understand the customers' needs and it will continue to be the same moving forward, as well. Our top three organisational priorities have been (1) Customers (2) Employees and (3) Investors. This makes it pretty simple for me to overcome economic issues or similar situations. We at houseoftours.com value customers first and ensure that our employees follow suit. This in turn brings in the revenue part and that is what matters to our investors. We have been successful in inculcating a work culture that resonates and builds upon these three priorities across all our divisions. We have always aimed for excellence and believe that success will definitely follow.
Q: Where did your organisation's funding/capital come from in the initial days and how did you go about getting it? How did you obtain investors for your venture?
The company (houseoftours.com) started with a credit card balance of Dh4,000, which we used to pay for flight tickets that we purchased and served our customers. Today, we stand at Dh54 million revenue and expect to close at Dh70 million by end of 2017. 
Currently, we have individual investors who levied their confidence over the years and plan to go to our next level by bringing venture capitalists on board.
Q: What does customer success mean to you in travel business?
At houseoftours.com, we have always ensured customer experience is given utmost priority. From responding to inquiries to grievances redressal to designing the website, our travel voucher to creating a holiday package or choosing a hotel property for our customer, we never compromise on customer experience. This commitment to delivering unparalleled customer experiences is testified by the 4.7 out of 5 rating by our fabulous customers on social media. These positive reviews ultimately help houseoftours.com drive towards successes.
Q: From travel to personalised aviation and business consultancy, the houseoftours.com is a growing entity, what are your plans for the future and specification you want to introduce?
The last 10 years saw us grow from travel to aviation to business consultancy and a couple of investments under our umbrella. Recently, we launched our Insurance division, CRI Insurance Brokers (crisecure.com), considering the potential this industry has in the Middle East region, and an audit company, Golden Falcon Consultancy, which is aimed to help SMEs and MNCs take care of VAT that is expected in 2018. From a travel division perspective, we plan to have offices in 50 locations by the end of 2019, and of course, a lot of new dimensions, which would be announced in due course of time. 
- mehkri@khaleejtimes.com


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