Each year, countless parents big spend money buying all the necessary items for raising kids in the modern era. From the essentials like cribs and strollers, to consumables like toys and diapers, the US baby industry alone is worth ~$74B per year. And while everyone wants only the very best for their kids, unfortunately, many of these products are thrown away after only a handful of uses, as kids rapidly mentally and physically outgrow their age-specific wares.
Matt Cass is the Founder & CEO of StorkSupply, a Toronto Founder Institute portfolio company flipping the infancy industry by offering baby gear on demand—StorkSupply lets busy parents lease, rather than buy, all the necessary items to meet their tiny tots’ needs.
The Rent the Runway of Baby Gear
Nowadays, there are online forums, Facebook groups, in-person meet-ups, and everything in between to help parents share and trade products for their kids. Items range anywhere from a gently used crib ($900), to pack and plays ($300), to rockers ($1000). These are products that, in most cases, can be cleaned or covered, and should be able to be used again and again—too often though, these items can be seen on the side of the road after a child has simply outgrown them, or otherwise stashed away in the attic or garage, in case a family member has a need for them down the line.
StorkSupply is changing these outcomes: de-cluttering your space, reducing material waste, and putting money back into the hands of hardworking parents, all through a simple on-demand product line with leasing options.
This comes at a time when the toy market, a more than $20B industry, is fueled by products primarily made from plastics. Regardless of their shelf life, these items can’t be recycled, and one day will be thrown out. The same can be said for many other products that babies and toddlers use, and most are only needed for a few years of development.
Rather than purchasing a $1000 rocking chair that will be outgrown in a couple of years, StorkSupply makes it easy to lease one for as low as $320. And, because safety and care are always top priorities for parents, StorkSupply has a rigorous process in place for cleaning all products before they make their way onto a new set of parents. Each item is also dropped off at and picked up from parents' homes, so no need to save bulky boxes for a year, either.
Though as a company themselves, StorkSupply is quite young at less than two years old, their approach has already led to some very positive successes. Beyond graduating from FI, Cass and his team have been accepted into the Alpha program for Collision, been profiled by Startup Here Toronto, and won the Schulich Startup Night. The team have also begun working with more than a dozen different suppliers to join their leasing program.
Like all new parents, Cass’ own interaction with the baby products market led to some surprises, which lent a helping hand in the creation of StorkSupply. Cass says,
We were blown away by how expensive it is, and how quickly kids go through it.
It was while he was shopping for a bassinet, that he found one that he liked, but couldn’t justify spending $500 on something that wouldn’t be used after a year. And thus, StorkSupply was born. Two years later, and Cass solved a problem that he experienced first-hand—so if you're a new parent in Toronto, save a few bucks with the sustainable choice: StorkSupply!
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