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Managers join forces to launch Italian association AIGAB

Italy: A number of property management companies in Italy have joined forces to launch the first Italian Association of Short-Term Rental Managers – AIGAB.

The founding members of the association are representatives from ALTIDO, CleanBnB, Italianway, Wonderful Italy and Sweetguest.

These include:

  • Marco Celani, president of AIGAB, and CEO of Italianway
  • Michele Ridolfo, vice president of AIGAB, and co-founder of Wonderful Italy
  • Francesco Zorgno, director of AIGAB, and co-founder, president and CEO of CleanBnB
  • Davide Ravalli, director of AIGAB, co-founder and head of M&A, ALTIDO
  • Rocco Lomazzi, director of AIGAB, founder and chairman, Sweetguest

According to the founders of AIGAB, the association has been created to provide “real and effective representation” to the short-term rental sector in Italy, in order to “affect the existing regulatory framework to standardise and harmonise it, and to grow a real market in competition with traditional accommodation”.

During the first national lockdown earlier this year, the members set up an initiative, #stateacasanostra, to show solidarity with the country’s health workers on the frontline of the fight against the pandemic by welcoming them to the homes they were managing for free. The purpose of this was to prevent them from infecting their own family members and those living in the same buildings, as well as to provide a safe, comfortable space for them between shifts.

In their words, as the months have passed, the government’s measures to confront the situation have given little benefit to the short-term rental sector, despite the sudden drop in reservations and restrictions on travel mobility.

Taking that into account, the property management representatives decided to join forces by creating a solid network of entrepreneurs who will aim to rebuild the country’s heavily-bruised short-term rental market. Each member will be responsible for trying to generate commercial partnerships and attract the attention of national and local institutions, to ensure that they will be at the table when it comes to negotiating regulations for rental operations as the pandemic continues into the New Year.

Italy was highlighted as one of the earliest hotspots for coronavirus in Europe, and the country swiftly imposed a strict lockdown to contain the cases to certain cities in the north in particular.

Too date, Italy has recorded more than 731,000 Covid-19 positive cases and 39,000 deaths, with World Health Organization [WHO] data highlighting that a second spike in the country is already well underway.