Charlie Webster is the 23 years old Managing Director of Albatross Villas Limited.
It all started during his first year studying law and business at Brighton University, he became seriously and had to head back to his parent’s home in Norfolk for some treatment and time off university.
After becoming seriously bored, with nothing to do, he finally decided to start renting his parents villa on a resort in Portugal called Praia D'El Rey. It was looking very promising after few successful bookings, so he decided to build a website where he could showcase more properties and decided to make a business out of it after putting small adverts in a national newspaper which attracted more bookings.
He said "By the end of 2005 other friends asked me to handle their rentals in Portugal and I had 10 properties to let, so I formed a company. Some holiday clients said they were interested in buying a villa and I contacted local property agents to agree a commission if their properties sold through my website." In 2006, he made 10 sales from a 100 properties, and by the end of 2007 had decided to build up his own portfolio.
At the start, Webster was lent £50,000 by his parents (which is now fully repaid) to set up a website, develop a brochure and do some limited advertising in holiday magazines.
Over the last few years he has developed the company into a successful Holiday Rentals, Property Sales and Villa Consultancy business. Although Charlie struggles daily with his illness, he strives to promote the Silver Coast as a holiday destination and great place to live.
Let’s just say if things had gone according to plan Charlie Webster would have a degree in law and business and be looking for a job.
He claims that Albatross Properties is cushioned against the downturn. "We had a good autumn last year when I sold a house on commission for £1.8m, and the payment is just coming through, so that will cover the marketing bills for six months. But I am taking precautions by cutting out magazine advertisements which are very expensive, and re-assessing whether to take on the two extra staff which I'd planned for this autumn."
Webster travels to Portugal almost weekly to escort clients to view the properties, but runs the business from Norfolk.