All About Ragin’ Raccoon’s Brand Story
Updated: Jan 21
We know you’re used to coming to the Ragin’ Raccoon blog for tips and tricks on how to optimize your short term rental. It’s kind of our thing. But today, we’re switching it up and getting personal. Keep reading for more on our brand’s origin story and where we’re headed in 2023 and beyond. So, did you know?
Our founder, Justin Pera, was born in Albania and was inspired by his entrepreneurial uncle. That’s right. Until moving to the United States at age 11, Justin and his family lived in Albania. From a young age, he was enamored with one uncle’s entrepreneurial spirit and the lifestyle it empowered. This spark only continued to develop as Justin grew up – consistently looking at everyday challenges as opportunities for creative solutions.
The Ragin’ Raccoon business model was inspired by Justin’s own personal short term rental experience. Flash forward to 2020. In the midst of a vacation, an Airbnb property owner asked Justin to push some dirty trash bins to the curb. Like most would be, he was frustrated that he was being asked to deal with garbage cans filled with other guests’ trash during what was meant to be a relaxing getaway. While this might have led others to simply complain or leave a poor review, the situation instead got Justin’s entrepreneurial gears turning. After researching and discovering there wasn’t a trash removal solution tailored specifically to short term rentals, Ragin’ Raccoon was born.
Ragin’ Raccoon got its start in Tampa, Florida. The business got its start in sunny Tampa, Florida – the same city where Justin had his disappointing Airbnb experience and later lightbulb moment. Through pure determination and hustle, our founder grew to managing trash removal for eighteen rental properties in the area. That being said, he quickly realized the Tampa market wasn’t quite right for his business model due to its widespread neighborhoods and surprisingly consistent waste management practices. Again, it was this issue that inspired Justin to look at this challenge as just another opportunity – discovering what US city had a deeper need for his solution.
In 2021, the business successfully fundraised capital to build a proprietary mobile app and acquire branded trucks. After connecting with Scott Yesner and Jonathan Dempsey, co-founders of Rentsidual, Justin determined that Philadelphia, PA, a city with a serious trash problem, was the ideal market for Ragin’ Raccoon to grow and scale. That instinct was proven spot on as the business took off quickly in Philly. Justin began self-funding an app that would integrate with property management softwares like Hostaway, later receiving funding from Yesner and Dempsey to expand the app’s capabilities and purchase Ragin’ Raccoon branded trucks.
In 2022, Ragin’ Raccoon expanded to two new markets & launched an unlimited service. Momentum only grew as property owners and managers discovered the value Ragin’ Raccoon’s trash removal brings. This year alone, the business has expanded to Annapolis, MD and Telluride, CO – two tourist destinations with identifiable trash problems. As the business expands, so do our service offerings. Recently, the team launched an unlimited, on-demand option, allowing customers to pay a flat rate for real-time trash removal during certain time slots.
While these five facts tell the big picture story of Ragin’ Raccoon’s journey so far, there is still so much yet to be written. Stay in touch with our brand on social and here on the blog for more news on the business as we continue to grow and scale.