My name is Caroline Hafele and I was previously the Manager of Entrepreneur Selection & Growth at Endeavor Louisville. My journey with Endeavor was truly a unique experience, and I’d like to share it as I believe it is a testament to the strength and support of the global Endeavor network.
I am originally from Louisville, Kentucky, but that is not where I first discovered Endeavor. In July 2015, I met the Endeavor Colombia team in Bogotá, where I was working on a consulting project for a company that was in the Endeavor selection process. I was immediately drawn to the business model and quickly discovered that Endeavor had just launched their third U.S. office in Louisville that same year.
By mid 2016, I had moved back to Kentucky to start working at Endeavor Louisville. My three years at Endeavor were what I like to call my second MBA, but this time in entrepreneurship. I learned so much from working with founders on a daily basis, and I eventually developed a strong desire to work at a scale up company myself. I set that goal for 2019, and paired it with the goal to live in a Spanish speaking country again (I had previously worked in Spain for two years and decided that it would be a great place to return to).
When I shared my aspirations with the Endeavor local and global teams, they encouraged me to reach out to our team in Spain. Two months later, I was on a flight to Madrid, Spain with a plan to spend three months with the Endeavor team to help prepare for the Madrid International Selection Panel, and in the process, meet as many entrepreneurs from the Spain network as possible.
In March 2019 at an Endeavor event in Madrid, I met Guillermo Gaspar and Christian Rodriguez, co-founders of BYHOURS, a travel tech company based in Barcelona. BYHOURS is the first booking platform to offer quality hotel room rentals for a few hours at a time (3, 6 or 12 hours), allowing the customer to choose the check-in time and length of stay. Since introducing this new concept of microstays in 2012, BYHOURS has reached a customer base of 250,000, partnered with more than 3,000 hotels, and has sold more than one million hours of microstays.
Given my love for travel, I was instantly intrigued by the concept. Many people ask, “why would I need a hotel for a few hours?” There are many ideal use cases, such as:
- Business travelers looking for a break before or between meetings
- Travelers looking to rest and recharge during a long layover, a delayed flight, or last-minute changes in plans
- Leisure-seekers looking to explore new hotels and facilities, such as a rooftop pool on a hot summer day in the city
When I heard about their expansion plans in the Americas, I offered to connect them to Endeavor Entrepreneurs in the U.S. During those discussions, they explained that they were looking for a Business Development Manager in their new office in Mexico City. In May 2019, I moved to Mexico to work at BYHOURS, specifically on strategic expansion in Latin America and an upcoming launch in the U.S.
I feel very fortunate to have had the Endeavor network as my support system during this journey. The global network is a family, not just for entrepreneurs, but for employees. The idea of leaving Kentucky to find a new job in Spain, only to end up in Mexico, might sound crazy to most, but at Endeavor, crazy is a compliment!
Thank you to the teams at Endeavor Louisville, Endeavor Spain and Endeavor Global for your constant encouragement and support. As always, thank you to all of the Endeavor Entrepreneurs for constantly inspiring us to think bigger.
Interested in joining the Endeavor team? Check out all of our offices across the world.