Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Key features used
Some problems cannot be solved by others, and you have to take the risk and do it yourself. Kuba Szutkowski and his team realized this when they became tired of traveling over 100 miles to rent lighting equipment. They decided that it would be easier to start a rental company themselves, which not only solved their problem but also benefits other studios in the area.
This story is more typical of rental businesses than you think, and it makes perfect sense why many companies have begun offering rentals on the side. It not only provides them with instant access to the equipment they need but also opens up a second stream of income and the chance to build a community of like-minded people to support and collaborate with.
Kuba and his team started Rotterlight in 2017 in response to a problem they and others were facing in the area. They are based in Rotterdam, the second largest city in The Netherlands, and spent a lot of time traveling between there and Amsterdam to rent lighting equipment. This became frustrating as the trip would take half a day to complete for every shoot.
Amsterdam has dozens of camera and lighting rental companies, but Rotterdam, unfortunately, had none. This is the source of the problem as they would just go to a supplier in their city if there were one. So, Kuba and his team decided to create their own lighting rental shop in their city. Saving themselves and others in the region the time wasted on such long trips.
Rotterlight offers a broad range of film lighting equipment ranging from 5Kw fresnels to RGBW tubes. Alongside relevant accessories like tripods, clamps, sandbags, cables, and more. In addition, they also offer lighting services that include transport and setup of lighting equipment on filming locations in the south of The Netherlands, and they are the only ones providing this service.
When Kuba and his team decided to create their own rental business, they knew there would be a lot of admin to handle. So, they began looking for a company that provided rental software that met their needs, ideally based in The Netherlands. As luck would have it, they came across Booqable, which met all the requirements they had for the administration of Rotterlight.
They can keep track of what equipment is ingoing and outgoing, so they know exactly anything is at any given time. This inventory tracking is combined with the online store integrated on their website to provide real-time availability for customers. They also keep track of their finances within Booqable as it keeps reports of equipment usage and invoice payments.
Kuba reckons that automating all of this has saved him and his team countless hours of administration work had they not used it from the company’s beginning. It is easy to see how much work would have had to be done manually if they didn’t have Booqable. The time savings and convenience have kept them as long-term customers of the software.
Rotterlight has seen steady growth in bookings over the past five years. Thanks to their incredible marketing and networking efforts, as well as Booqable making it easy for customers to find and book. The team has also been very happy with the improvements that have been made over the past few years and found them to be useful to daily operations.
Kuba calls their growth ambitions modest as the rental business is run as a side business and generally operates in a B2B model. Therefore they only have limited time and investment they can make with no illusions of enormous growth. However, they are always happy to find more clients for the products they offer and Booqable ensures they are ready for the challenge.