People’s Champion Finalist: LOVESPACE (2014)
Learn about the company aiming to disrupt the £1bn self-storage industry – and cast your vote for the Startups Awards People’s Champion hopeful
Start-up name: LOVESPACE
Founder: Brett Akker
Started in: 2012
Based in: London
Business description: By-the-box storage collected from your door
When the founder of the largest car-sharing club in Europe decides to quit the business to focus on a new venture, it’s fair to assume it would have to be pretty special. Streetcar (now Zipcar) founder Brett Akker has already enjoyed significant success, but LOVESPACE has the potential to be his most successful business yet.
Cloud-based digital storage is all the rage these days, and LOVESPACE is the first business to replicate these convenient principles in the physical world; customers buy physical storage by-the-box, which is then collected – free of charge – directly from their door. Traditional storage services will see you pay for a fixed-size unit you might only utilise a small part of, but LOVESPACE ensures you only pay for what you need – and at prices starting at just £1.95 per month per box, it offers exceptional value for money too.
It’s a business model with obvious appeal for all parties involved, and has the potential to disrupt an industry crying out for change. Akker, understandably, has high ambitions for the business: “We aim to disrupt the £1bn UK storage industry, doing to it what Amazon did to bookshops and Ocado did to supermarket shopping – by introducing greater efficiency, convenience, and a much more transparent, flexible pricing model.
Indeed, 2014 looks set to be the year in which LOVESPACE really took off. Brett Akker describes the start-up’s growth as “astronomical”, and the figures tell their own story; the business went from managing 3,000 boxes to more than 20,000 by the end of August.
Backed by £1.2m early funding and £1.6m from the crowd (270% of its original Crowdcube target), LOVESPACE now has everything it needs to kick on with an ambitious international expansion strategy.
Why LOVESPACE made our 50:
Championing excellent independent British produce is impressive enough, but doing it whilst growing a business by 600% a year is a truly special feat.