Elevator Pitch is a regular feature on Lifehacker where we profile startups and new companies and pick their brains for entrepreneurial advice. This week, we’re talking with Nick Gonios and Will Rogers from online men’s fashion retailer KENT & LIME.
In 128 words or less, explain your business idea.
KENT & LIME is for men who don’t have the time, energy or knowledge to go shopping for clothes in store or on-line. We aim to take the strain and hassle out by doing the hard work for them whilst delivering a highly personal experience which is quick and fun.
Our customers speak to a Style Advisor who takes about 10 minutes to find out what you like and don’t like. A KiT of clothing, accessories and shoes arrives and he has five days to decide what he wants to keep and what he’ll want picking up. He only pays for the clothes he wants and all shipping is free. It’s shopping without shopping!
What strategies are you using to grow and finance your idea?
We’ve invested time, our own start up capital, hiring a great team and working our relationships to get to this point. We have been very open with our strategy and execution plans with partners as our belief is that it all comes down to our ability to execute well. Without that its all just planning and talk!
We just about to kick into a small capital raising round amongst friends and business associates to take the business to the next level.
What’s the biggest challenge facing your business?
Our biggest challenge right now is time allocated to raise funds. Nick is going to take a lead role on this and Will continues to focus on service experience with our Style Advisors and partners. We are working hard to prove our business serves a real market need and so far it’s going in the right direction.
How do your differentiate your business from your competitors??
Our customers never have to visit any clothing store again. Our service model is all about one to one service and convenience.
What one phone, tablet or PC application could you not live without?
Will: Definitely the iPad. The access to our CRM is invaluable especially as we are always running about and can respond to new customers instantly. There are also some great apps that really come in handy when you are on the move and you need to create a great Facebook update; we really like ‘Over’ and ‘Phoster’.
Nick: My iPhone and Gmail app! Keeps me current with what’s happening while I’m on the go. My other weekly ritual is listening to the Monocle podcast series. Can’t wait until the Monocle Entrepreneurs podcast is available every Wednesday. It’s what I listen to in the car while driving to and from the office during the week.
What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve ever received?
Will: Don’t be afraid to dip a toe in because you have 9 more!
Nick: Focus on the ‘now’ not what could be in the future! Especially in early stage start up mode.
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