Don’t underestimate the diaper industry: How one small startup is ready to disrupt the giants of baby care
When we think of startups we often think of revolutionary ideas impacting the world like an Elon Musk Hyperloop traveling from New York to Washington D.C in 30 minutes, or Mark Zuckerburg’s Facebook which evidently has the power to swing huge political elections. However, it is often easy to forget that it is the smallest things that can have a huge impact on our daily lives. The items we use every day, all the small comforts and tool which we take for granted, innovation in this space is most likely going to have a surprising impact on our lives, changing traditional industries and businesses that have lasted for years.
Dollar Shave Club is a perfect example of this, producing a system which turned a deeply entrenched industry upside down while making our lives more convenient. Now, another new startup wants to do the same, but for diapers. Diapers2Go, aims to change how parents approach diapers on the go by creating a more efficient product, which is completely organic and biodegradable.
To get a better understanding of the company and its overarching goal, we spoke with Thomas Mai, the cofounder and CEO of Diapers2go.
I understand you currently have an Indiegogo fundraiser set up. What will you put the funds towards if they are successfully raised?
We are raising money through crowdfunding to start the first production batch at our factory. We are essentially asking people to pre-order their diapers which will help pay for the production. The minimum order is 80,000 diapers for the factory to start their production and that requires capital and customers (unless you have a very big garage where you can store them all)
Who do you consider to be your main competitors and how do you differentiate yourself from them?
The good news is that there is no one else on the diaper market who has a diaper with everything built in. We are coming along with an innovative product that has changing mat, wet wipes, cream and trash bag built in, all organic and biodegradable. We are trying to save parents the stress and hustle of remembering everything when they leave their house with their little one.
The bad news is that we have to educate parents about our product, why it is different and what advantages it has for busy parents on the go. The diaper industry is huge and there are some very big players that parents already know and trust.
What is the main focus for Diapers2Go over the next 6 months?
Get production and distribution established on a massive scale so any parent in the world can order and use our diapers.
Thomas, I can see from your LinkedIn that you have lived all over the world, is buying diapers noticeably easier or cheaper in certain parts of the world, or is it equally difficult?
I have been very fortunate to live and work on 5 different continents (Europe, Africa, North America, South America and Australia) We live on an amazing planet and I have learned that we have more in common than we have in differences. If only we all could get along despite differences in culture, religion, sex, race, moral and ethics, life would be better for everyone.
Diapers are cheap and easy to come by anywhere in the world. That is because selling diapers in a supermarket is a loss leading business. Supermarkets sell diapers at a loss to lure parents in so they can make money on all the other products they sell.
I also understand that you have previously run almost 30 crowdfunding campaigns for film production. Do you have any advice for others who are looking to launch a successful crowdfunding campaign?
Crowdfunding shortens the distance between inventor and parents without going through expensive middlemen. I think crowdfunding is one of the best innovations over the last 10 years as it gives everyone a shot at selling/financing their dream whether it is art, music, film, diapers or anything else you can think of.
I think crowdfunding has democratised the access to capital and customers for every budding entrepreneur or artist
To support their mission you can find their Indiegogo page here.