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Casper builds a mattress brand online

News, 01 June 2015

NEW YORK: Casper is seeking to prove that digital disruption can impact even the sleepiest of product categories as it challenges the major players in the US mattress sector.

Philip Krim, the company's co-founder/ceo, discussed this topic at TechCrunch Disrupt NY 2015 conference in New York.

The firm – which secured $20m in sales during its first ten trading months – is tackling many of the problems shoppers associate with buying a mattress, like overwhelming choice, high prices and awkward returns policies.

Casper makes just one mattress that is available in six sizes and has a starting price of $500. Orders are placed online, and the product springs, essentially ready to use, out of the box.

With a 100-day trial period, backed by free delivery and pick up, the organisation believes it has addressed most of the pain points that currently exist.

"I think, one of the questions it starts with is, 'Do people hate the way it is today?' And, universally, people hated the way you bought a mattress traditionally," said Krim. (For more, including details of its marketing strategy, read Warc's exclusive report: Casper puts some bounce into the mattress category.)

"Fortunately, you can circumvent traditional distribution and go direct to consumers these days, with a digitally-led brand that connects, and you can grow very quickly."

Casper has been compared with eyewear manufacturer Warby Parker and shaving brand Harry's, both of which aimed to transform categories where one or a couple of large players held a dominant position.

"You see that they're industries where there haven't been a lot of change in a number of years. They are usually pretty tightly controlled," said Krim.

In the mattress sector, he reported, two companies similarly control approximately 70% of manufacturing share, meaning this situation is replicated for Casper.

"Fortunately for us, the bar to do anything cool in the mattress category is pretty low. So, no one had ever done anything like this with the category, and I think we saw it really resonated with people," said Krim.

Data sourced from Warc