BusinessNo more counting sheep when you sleep on Canadian-made Endy mattress

No more counting sheep when you sleep on Canadian-made Endy mattress

No more counting sheep when you sleep on Canadian-made Endy mattress

All photos courtesy of Endy

Everyone knows that a good night’s sleep affects the quality of your waking life. Fall short a few hours and you’re waking up on the wrong side of the bed. We could give you a handful of tips to help you sleep better at night but what if all it took was one Canadian made mattress shipped right to your door?

Endy - Canada’s leading online mattress retailer - knows that the key to a good night’s sleep starts with a quality mattress. While some find comfort in perusing through big box mattress retailers, Endy offers their 100 Night Trial, free shipping and free returns. If customers aren’t satisfied with their mattress within the first 100 nights, Endy will pick it up and grant a full refund - no questions asked.

With its perfect firmness and memory foam-like feel, it’s no wonder over 50,000 Endy mattresses have been sold across Canada. As one of Canada’s fastest growing e-commerce companies and meticulously crafted mattress brands, Endy was awarded Techweek’s Top 100 Innovator Award in 2016. This month, the mattress brand ranked 4th overall in Canadian Business and Maclean's 2018 Startup 50.

Endy is on track to exceed $50 million in revenue in 2018, all while selling exclusively in Canada. Amidst their explosive nation-wide success, Endy announced that they will be opening a new distribution centre in Western Canada to keep up with the demand.

Ottawa Life Magazine caught up with Endy Mattress co-founder, Mike Gettis, to discuss getting a better night’s sleep, securing one of the largest investments in Dragon Den history and giving back to Canadians in need.

Ottawa Life: Can you provide a little background on how your idea was conceived?

Endy co-founders Mike Gettis (left) and Rajen Ruparell (right)

Mike Gettis: Rajen, my co-founder, and I came up with the concept for Endy back in 2014. Rajen came from an e-commerce background, and I came from product development. We knew there was a need for a vertical e-commerce mattress company in Canada that put customers first. In Canada specifically, the mattress industry has been based around a traditional retail model that requires customers to go to a store, roll around on a few mattresses for 15 seconds each, and negotiate with a commissioned salesperson. We set out to change that. We put our marketing and acquisition brains together, and saw an opportunity to grow a vertical e-commerce company specifically for Canadians. It was important for us to optimize and develop a proudly Canadian-made mattress, and help those across the country get a better night’s sleep.

 Were there any challenges along the way?

Absolutely, there were challenges along the way. We’re a bootstrapped company. Starting with a very modest investment, we were able to grow to where we are today. We’re approaching $50M in sales this year along and have achieved profitability - no small feat in the Canadian startup space.

How has being a Canadian-made mattress influenced your product?

Our mattress is made right here in Canada, which means it doesn’t have to ship long distances, and it was specifically designed for the Canadian climate: unlike traditional memory foam, which firms up in winter and softens in summer, Endy foam feels consistent year-round. People are actively seeking out Canadian-made products, and they’re proud to support companies that are based here and find success.

You are Canada’s leading online mattress retailer. In what ways has this online approach had a positive impact on your business?

We’ve focused on the online approach for a number of reasons. For starters, we’re able to direct all Canadians to a single location - - where they can learn about our product, read reviews, and ultimately make a purchase. Traditional retail models depend on wholesalers, retailers, and multiple locations, which increases markup on the product and makes it far more expensive for the consumer. We are focused on building a successful e-commerce model that puts customers first, and allows them to get a truly exceptional mattress that won’t break the bank. In our minds, as well as our customers’, sleeping on a mattress for more than three months is a far more valuable test than rolling around on a few options in a big box store. If you would like to try the Endy Mattress for yourself, our closest showroom to Ottawa is in Gatineau, at Vice Versa (50 Rue Montcalm).

I understand that your brand secured one of the largest investments in Dragon Den history (congrats!!). Can you comment on what it was like to appear on the show?

Going on Dragons’ Den was definitely nerve wracking. Not everyone gets a deal on the show, and we had no idea what to expect when we walked on the set. We worked hard to get our pitch together and are grateful to have received such a tremendous response from the Dragons. We were offered $1M in exchange for a 7.5% stake in our company. More importantly, we were able to impress upon the Dragons and those watching at home how passionate we are about this business, and how focused we are on the Canadian consumer.

Endy prides themselves on being a Canadian-made mattress

You recently announced the opening of a distribution centre in Western Canada. How do you think this affects the image of your brand nationally?

It’s always been our mission to help Canadians from coast-to-coast get a better night’s sleep. As a truly national brand, we knew we had to get our shipping out west on par and up to speed with our delivery times to Ontario and Quebec. I was born and raised in Calgary, and as someone who has always been interested in e-commerce, I found it frustrating as a customer to wait nearly twice as long for products to arrive compared to my friends and family in Toronto. Both British Columbia and Alberta have large populations that want to shop online, and they shouldn’t have to wait any longer than our customers out east. The faster we can deliver, the better we can delight, the more customers will fall in love with our product, and the quicker we will grow. We’re excited to have opened this western distribution centre, and know our customers are, too.

What advice would you give to young entrepreneurs today?

There’s a ton of advice I would give. First, make sure you’re talking to the right people about your business idea. Speak to people who have started - or, better yet, who have failed to start - a business. It’s not a popularity contest: just because people like your idea does not mean it’s a viable business model. In terms of capital, family and friends are great, but if you can find a strategic investor who can help you get your idea off the ground, that’s even better. Last, action is way more important than writing a fancy marketing plan, so start executing as quickly as you can.

Anything else you’d like our readers to know?

One thing we’re really proud of at Endy is our commitment to giving back to Canadians from coast-to-coast. We’ve donated more than 2,000 new and gently used mattresses to Canadians in need through our charity partnerships across Canada. We work with dozens of registered Canadian not-for-profits, including Furniture Bank in Toronto, Women in Need Society in Calgary, and Matthew House in Ottawa. Matthew House is an incredible partner to us, and we’re grateful to support their mission - they provide shelter and furnishings to refugees and those transitioning to permanent housing. We are always looking to expand our network of charity partners and help even more Canadians get a better night’s sleep.

Comments (2)

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Candace Elliott November 25, 2018 1:01 pm

do these mattress's hold heat .

Carol Bruce November 14, 2018 8:34 pm

How much is a queen size mattress