Featured Startup Pitch: Oransi is targeting health-conscious consumers in the U.S. and China with its high-end air purifiers
Elevator Pitch: We are the only maker of high performance air purifiers in the U.S. for the consumer market. Indoor air can be two-to-five times more polluted than outdoor air, and we improve the lives of our customers by providing clean indoor air by using the highest-quality components available.
We make room air purifiers with best-in-class components: Industrial air filters (same as used in hospital operating rooms), super-efficient German motors, and all other components are made in the USA. We do this to have the highest reliability and quality.
When my son was an infant, he suffered from asthma and the medications he was prescribed were just awful. They helped with his asthma, but the process of strapping on the nebulizer mask was not fun for any of us and the steroids had side effects, causing all of us to be miserable.
Ionic air purifiers were being marketed at that time, but I didn’t see them as a viable solution. During this time, I worked my way up to senior manager/director positions at two Fortune 100 companies (Tech Data and Dell) in marketing and operations. I left Dell in 2002 to start an ecommerce business, sold the company in 2009 and it is still successful.
As a Northerner (from Syracuse) who now lives in the South (Austin, Texas), I have developed allergies, and between my son’s asthma and my new appreciation for allergy sufferers, I have a passion for helping people breathe easier. Oransi was started in 2009 to make the best air purifiers in the world.
Since our products are higher-end, we focus on the Internet sales channel in the U.S. Our sales are growing nicely in China and we sell through distributors, so our marketing strategy is aligned with supporting their businesses.
Our focus is on the two largest markets: U.S. and China. The U.S. market is approximately $1 billion and expected to grow eight percent per year for the next five years. The market in China is expected to grow 34 percent per year for the next five years to become a $22 billion-to-$30 billion market. Driven by poor air quality, China clearly has the largest market potential and there are as many as 100 brands selling there today with most being low- to mid-range manufacturers. We have a huge opportunity to gain market share, since there is no dominant player and we only have one, maybe two companies that come close in performance.
How We Differentiate From the Competition
Performance and reliability—we are at the top end of the market. There is no way we can compete with the huge number of manufacturers in China at the low end of the market, but by having better products we stand out at the high end. We are the only pure direct-to-consumer brand in the U.S., and this allows us to sell better products at competitive price points. Also, by selling direct we get feedback directly from customers that we use to drive our product improvements. For China, we manufacture our products in the U.S. and export them, and in doing this we have almost no competition in being the ‘made in USA’ brand.
We design our products in-house and have a team of customer service reps that work from their homes. Outside of this, many of our other functional areas are outsourced to companies who specialize in those areas (e.g.—warehousing, online marketing). This allows us to focus on our core competencies.
We have been self-funded to date and are needing to build up our infrastructure to support our growing business in China.
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Headquarters: Austin, Texas
Founder: Peter Mann
Year Founded: 2009