Ahmed Mezil, CEO of Hellamaid cleaning services, started his company in 2017 and later joined forces with partner Abdulrahman El-Sayed, COO. Ahmed provides the marketing and branding, while Abdulrahman takes care of the operations and customer success.
What’s in a Name?
Ahmed wanted a name that was easy to say and linguistically appealing, he chose Hellamaid because it has a smooth rhythm. The first part represents a great impact, the second part represents the cleaning industry.
Hellamaid is a cleaning service with three goals:
1. Delighting Homeowners – with convenient online booking service and quality cleaning
2. Supporting Communities – boosting economy, supporting chambers of commerce, hiring cleaners
3. Empowering Cleaners – living wage employer, putting cleaners first, through support and value
Since Ahmed said he is a big fan of Starbucks and how they create an experience and a positive environment for employees and customers; he wants Hellamaid to become the Starbucks of cleaning services. While he acknowledges that it’s important to start out with a business plan, he said it’s also important as an entrepreneur, to implement, refine and tweak – learning as you go to avoid the trap of analysis paralysis. An engineer, Ahmed said he was exposed to the entrepreneur culture at the universities of Toronto and Waterloo. He describes having the hunger to launch a business but thought he fell short because he did not have a world-changing idea. Then, one day a friend sent him a Reddit article that listed business ideas and outlined an approach to launch a company that resonated with him. In looking locally, Ahmed discovered there was nothing uniting cleaners and no new innovations in that industry; he quickly saw opportunity!
Ahmed was excited when their company was cleaning four or five houses per week, now they are cleaning over 50 per week! “We are scaling,” he said. “When my partner and I launched in Guelph we realized we can replicate the plan in other cities – templating our hiring process and other systems.” They have now expanded Hellamaid into the Niagara region as well.
Hellamaid hires independent contractors similar to how Uber or Skip the Dishes does. The experienced cleaners follow best practices and guidelines provided by Ahmed and his partner. He is proud that he can say, a clean home is just one click away, and they are working on an app to give life to that phrase.
Business Mentorship from IG
Innovation Guelph, and in particular IG Startup Program mentor Steve Barrett, has worked with Hellamaid providing guidance through business and personal struggles. Among the most impactful challenges the company has faced is COVID-19 and the effect it has had on small businesses. Initially they committed to finding a new way to continue employment for their cleaners; Hellamaid pivoted to purchasing and delivering groceries for clients when people first reacted to the pandemic by closing their homes to outside service providers. Once the public realized the importance of sanitizing and disinfecting their homes, Hellamaid discontinued the grocery delivery, and began once again cleaning houses, apartments, condos, and businesses, experiencing significant growth month over month.
The Vision – Invent the Colours!
Looking forward, the company has plans to continue expanding into new cities and to eventually launch a new app to help ease the process of booking even more. “It almost feels like the world is our oyster,” Ahmed said. “When I launch a webpage it gives me access and opportunity – you can really do anything!” He said his team of cleaners has grown from two to 40 and he’s happy to help others put food on their tables. With determination, learning and patience, you can build a business and deliver impact, he said.
“Being an entrepreneur is like having a blank canvas. I can paint however I like, and I can even invent new colors!”