Carla Martinesi, Founder & CEO, CHOMP

The Mobile App Making a Difference

2 minute read ~ #startup ~ #innovation ~ #socialimpact

CHOMP's Story 

CHOMP is a revolutionary mobile app that aims to reduce food waste in Hong Kong. Registered F&B establishments can list surplus items at a discounted price. It all began with Ms Martinessi's knowledge and experience in the F&B business, where she noticed that food waste was an unavoidable byproduct. She told herself that there must be something she can do to reduce this problem and help save the planet. After two years of hard work, CHOMP now has 9000 users on the app and works with over 135 vendors across Hong Kong. 

"We knew it would fail" 

Ms Martinesi describes herself as a realist and says that statistically, "we knew it would fail". Most startups only survive for 3 to 5 years, so she put all she could into CHOMP. It was about a year and a half since the app's beginning when Ms Martinesi began to doubt if all the hard work and sacrifices were worth it. But in 2023, Ms Martinesi made it on the Forbes 30 Under 30 List (Social Impact, Asia). This award gave CHOMP the recognition it deserved and gave Ms Martinesi the confidence and confirmation that all her work has paid off. 

Building Your Team 

Building a team of like-minded individuals is a difficulty many face. However, Ms Martinesi found that her age played a more prominent factor than she thought. Being a young entrepreneur, she often hired employees older than her, those with more experience and connections that could benefit the company. She believes these factors were "green flags" that could propel the business forward. Unfortunately, she learned that many undermined her abilities simply due to her age and realised that this was not the team she wanted to work with. Moving forward, she looked for people aligned with her priorities. More importantly, she learned the importance of trusting herself. She says that "you know yourself and your company the best", so although it is essential to listen to other people's advice, you should ultimately make your own decisions and conclusions as you are also the one who has to live with responsibility and consequences. 

  • Founder and CEO, CHOMP
  • International Hospitality Management, EHL
  • Bachelor of Business Administration, Hospitality Administration / Management, Glion Institue of Higher Education
  • Fun Fact: Carla's favorite holiday is Halloween!

Connect with Carla!

Lightning Round ⚡️: Fast Questions with Even Faster Answers

Most overlooked quality in an entrepreneur

What keeps you awake at night?

How to deal with failure?

How to unstuck?

Determination 💪

Financial Reports 📈

Be okay with it 👍

Go for a run 🏃‍♀️

Student Reflections on Facebook

Carla’s story was incredible inspiring. Everyone has SOMETHING they stand for, but few take the steps to do something about it, let alone start a new company to solve a problem close to their heart. Carla did this with Chomp. Her story as a non technical founder was particularly inspiring to me, as she overcame a multitude of challenges (including technical ones) to eventually gain success. Her #passion for the mission imbibed #resilience as she faced challenges early on and she demonstrated true #grit to continue in the face of rejection and obstacles. I am excited to see how Chomp changes the food waste situation in HK!! - Ananth Dhananjay, Student from ENTR 1001

It’s really a great honour to hear Carla Martinesi’s sharing and her words are really inspiring. We all know that it’s really hard to turn down a friend’s invitation, especially when we actually really want to hang out ourselves. But there are always people like her, for their own ambition, can do this. When she was asked how she did it, she said that no matter how many challenges she encountered, she would always remember her original intention to create CHOMP - she wanted to do this project for the planet and for future generations, so she would focus on completing her mission. And it is her selfless love that I admire most. #grit #passion #service - Jiaxuan Yu, Student from ENTR 1001

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