Friday, September 22nd, 2017 by Erin Kavanagh
If you are a fan of the show Shark Tank, you’ve probably seen a few business start-up ideas that surprised you. Whether they were a genius idea to solve a common need in the community, or so far out of this world you don’t know how they even thought of it – we’ve put together some Aussie business ventures to WOW and inspire you.
Do these words sound familiar: ‘Shop now. Pay later’? Nick Molnar recognised just how sweet these words sounded to consumers and brought AfterPay straight to us!
The company started in 2014 in Sydney and allows consumers to buy now and pay back the cost of the item over a two month period. Nick determined that shoppers wanted flexibility and payment solutions that match their finances.
AfterPay is available in stores or while shopping online (you may have even seen the signs around some of your fave shops) and provides simple, interest-free instalment plans, instantly. Retailers from all sectors are embracing this initiative with fashion, beauty and health, home and entertainment, sports, automotive, and food and beverage companies offering this payment option to their customers.
AfterPay grown in popularity since its launch, growing from just over 1000 customers to over 500,000 active customers now using it to shop online with over 3000 retailers.
If you want to find out if this option is available in a particular store, you can check if the AfterPay option is available in the ‘shop directory’ section on the website.
If you check out skin care brands available at the shops, you’ll notice that there are options for babies and littlies, teenagers 15 years and over, and the big kids (adults). But what about those aged 6-14?
At 14 years old (yep, you read correctly – just 14 years old!) Izzi Dymalovski from Melbourne created the brand Luv Ur Skin. The brand has continued to expand and can now be found in Priceline stores throughout Aus.
At 8 years old, Izzi’s mum didn’t let her use her makeup for her dance concert due to the chemicals it contained, so of course she started developing a range for girls her age then and there!
Luv Ur Skin, a brand focused on encouraging girls to develop healthy lifestyle habits and routines to take care of their skin and bodies as they grow. The best bit? Girls love the products, they’re affordable, and they are all nat-ur-al!
Need graphic design work done and don’t know where to look? Alec Lynch has the answer! A virtual team of over 580,000 designers from 165 countries around the world is available at the click of a button and at a low cost thanks to DesignCrowd.
It’s run a bit like a competition. All you have to do is post a project on the website and freelance designers will send through their design concepts in a bid for you to choose their work. Each project submitted receives around 50 designs to choose from– that’s a lot of work to choose from!
What inspired him? The release of the Olympic logo. It took a year to design and cost £400,000. Alec thought, why didn’t they run a global competition to find the winning logo? This led to the launch of DesignCrowd in 2008 and the rest was history! The concept has taken off with the total amount of design projects and contests reaching $42.8 million in September this year.
It may look and sound European but this brand is 100% Aussie! The man behind the business is Meindert Wolfraad who was born in Holland and moved to Aus at 28 years old. Approximately a year later, he imported the first VanMoof bikes to Australia, and in 2009 LEKKER was born.
The brand took the look and feel of the old school Omafiets Dutch bicycles, which are popular throughout the Netherlands, and redeveloped the engineering to suit the Aussie terrain. The Aussie influence also extends into the visual design, with each model coming in a range of beautiful colours.
The philosophy of buying a bike and using it for the rest of your life is important to Meindert, so these bikes are made to last. They can live outside in the Aussie weather (even at those beachside homes) and still look brand new!
The first marketing initiative is just as inspiring! With no budget for marketing material, Meindert locked up bikes along the streets in the Sydney CBD with business cards. The word on the street saw the phone start ringing and the website traffic soar!
Food and education make a great combination! Get Kids Cooking was developed by Joanne Bowskill and Holly Boal in 2013, with the focus of giving primary school students the cooking skills and knowledge to make healthy choices and eat right at a low cost.
The duo were presenting at schools themselves but following their appearance on Shark Tank last year, they now reach over 40 thousand students by working with schools by sending out the tools for teachers to run their own classes.
Their 12 month at-home cooking course has also taken off, allowing children to learn the secrets to cooking from home, with a new tool and recipe delivered to their door each month.
What’s next for them? Going global!
Developing a new business isn’t an easy task but these entrepreneurs were on to something!