Kiwi mum quits law for nappy businessSave
New Zealand mum Jessie Jarvie left behind a job as a corporate lawyer to launch a business in delivering time poor parents baby supplies. And business is booming.
The 29-year-old mum-of-two developed The Baby Bag in 2015 after finding it difficult to visit multiple supermarkets with her two young kids in tow.
"The supermarket trips were frequent. My husband Paul would swing by after a long day at work to pick up some more wipes, a packet of nappies or another packet of baby food," she said.
"Sometimes they wouldn't have what we were after so the nappy bag wouldn't be stocked with the right stuff. We'd have to visit different places, including several supermarkets, the produce store and the pharmacy, to get everything we needed.
"Once our second son arrived the nature of the problem changed. The idea of going anywhere with a really little baby can be quite scary, and with two, that fear increases exponentially," she said.
Despite having a professional background as a lawyer Jarvie had started a consulting business helping mums transition back into their profession once they'd had children, so she felt connected to The Baby Bag's target market in many ways.
"My biggest take away from my work was that no matter what situation a family with young children was in, it remained the case that baby supplies were required with such high frequency by parents that typically had very little flexibility in their daily routines," she said.
Jarvie puts the business launch down to a "whole lot of hard work and a little bit of luck". Particularly when it comes to how far she travels to work each day.
"Our luck was that when we had outgrown our first little warehouse and we needed more office space, the property behind us at home came up for rent.
"We convinced the landlord to let us lease it as a business and converted it into an office. We're so lucky to be able to be operating from there, because my family are right next door, but while I'm at work I can focus on the job," Jarvie said.
The Baby Bag, which operates nationwide in New Zealand, was the first of its kind and allowed parents to customise what products they want to order. In most cases it's same day delivery.
"Our prices are competitive with what you'll find in the supermarket, it's a core focus of ours because we know it's very important to our customers, who have often just gone down to one household income due to the arrival of their precious bundle.
"Bag content does vary depending on the time of the week or time of the year - for example, it's the school holidays here in New Zealand right now, so we've seen a big spike in the sale of our all-natural play dough, which we offer as a limited edition school holidays bag-filler to buy mum or dad five minutes of peace and quiet," she said.
The business system also analyses product trends too, so if a lot of cough syrups and breathing balms are being sold they'll alert parents about possible bugs in the air at daycare.
"In turn, we present probiotics and immunity boosters to parents warning them of the sniffles. It's the little things that make all the difference when you're raising young children,' Jarvie said.
"I especially love meeting customers on the doorstep. Whether they're in their pyjamas, or racing out the door to work, or sleep deprived with a toddler hanging off their leg, or rocking a precious new baby that won't go down, I just love seeing how our service fits into their lives.
"I also love what I call ambulance orders. These are orders of just one or two products, that arrive through the website at crazy hours of the night.
"A mum having difficulty breastfeeding that's in need of some Lansinoh quick smart. Or maybe a first-time dad that's trying to manage new-born twins and he can't get his head around how to fit them both in a trolley at the supermarket.
'It's so cool to be helping families in all sorts of tricky situations," Jarvie said.