Ideamakers Stories

How a Canadian company turned their sweet dreams into a reality.

November 2, 2017

Aashish Nathwani, Director of Marketing at Endy, shares how pop ups bring experiential shopping to their customers.

Most of us don’t spend a lot of time thinking about our mattress, but the average adult can spend up to 29,000 hours sleeping on one. Your mattress has a huge effect on your quality of sleep, your health, and your wellbeing. Of all the investments you make in your home, what you sleep on is one of the most important, and the team of experts at Endy is changing the way we shop for a mattress.

Endy is the brainchild of Mike Gettis and Rajen Ruparell. “Mike was working in the ecommerce sleep industry in the US and Raj was helping to build Groupon International and Groupon Goods,” explains Aashish Nathwani, Director of Marketing for Endy. “Mike knew the industry, so it was a natural transition. He and Raj have known each other for years, so there was a history there—it was more like a friendship that turned into a really cool business opportunity,” Nathwani explains. “We’ve grown quickly over the past two years – our team has doubled and we’ve become Canada’s best-selling online mattress brand by keeping strategy at the forefront of everything we do. We’ve worked hard to learn where we should place our bets and we’ve prioritized staying lean in our operations to supercharge our growth.” The company launched in 2015, and has been delivering a good night’s sleep ever since.

“The mattress industry as a whole hasn’t really changed in the last 50 or 60 years,” says Nathwani. “It’s always involved a person walking into a store and hopping around from mattress to mattress, and you don’t have a chance to get a true feel for an investment that you’re going to be sleeping on for the next five to ten years,” he says. This means we’re only spending a few minutes laying on a mattress in a brick and mortar store, and that doesn’t always give you the best idea of what it will feel like after eight hours. Endy offers a new way of testing out and buying a mattress—and it’s not just the shopping experience that’s different.

“In terms of our product, we’re really innovating with our Endy Foam in the top layer of our mattress. Unlike conventional memory foam, Endy Foam is not temperature sensitive, so whether you’re in Manitoba in the middle of winter or you’re in Ontario in the dead heat of summer, the mattress doesn’t change density or firmness. It’s pretty unique for what’s out there and it’s really designed for Canadians.” Endy mattresses are designed and manufactured in Canada, and ship directly to customers’ homes in a package about the size of a hockey bag.

“There are always opportunities to innovate, and continually innovating is a big part of who we are,” says Nathwani. “At the same time, it’s important to own what you know. We know mattresses, and we’ll always keep our focus on our signature product. Accessories like The Endy Pillow and The Endy Sheets (launching mid-November) bolster our assortment, and allow us to incorporate the technology of our mattress into the overall sleep experience. But, maintaining your focus and remembering why you started is of the utmost importance.”

Operating primarily online saves the expenses that come with running a brick and mortar business, and that margin can be invested back into the product. “It allows us to offer a much more competitive price and product to our customers,” says Nathwani. While more Canadians than ever are comfortable shopping for a mattress online, not everyone is ready to go digital with their mattress shopping, so Endy takes advantage of pop up opportunities to connect with customers in real life.

“A product like a mattress is something that you’re going to be sleeping on for years. When you go online, that sensory aspect goes away. Millennials are a bit more comfortable ordering things online but some people want to touch and feel the product before they commit. When we partnered with thisopenspace, it allows us to expand our reach without the heavy investment that comes with running a retail store. Also collaborating with and being around brands we admire like Mary Young elevates the entire experience for our customer,” he says. “We like to think of it as shopping IRL—retail stores elevate our omni-channel marketing strategy, and allow us to build meaningful relationships with customers in a new environment.”

Endy is leading the market in Canada, and they have big plans heading into the Holiday season and beyond. “We have some really awesome campaigns lined up so I’m excited to see that next stage of growth for Endy. But right now, it’s about showing Canadians what really sets us apart, what really makes Endy the best mattress ever.”

Want to up your sleep game? Check out Endy at Sleepover and meet the online brands that are reinventing the way you sleep. Visit the shop at 950 Queen Street West in Toronto.

Stores by thisopenspace are the place for online brands to sell in real life. Full-service retail spaces in premium locations available on flexible terms. Interested in selling with thisopenspace? Learn more here.