Here at The Grommet our mission is to put an end to nameless, faceless business and highlight the people and the stories behind the products we launch each day. And it's in that spirit that we're continuing this series to further share the stories of our Makers with you. Get to know them better, learn more about their journeys as Makers and entrepreneurs and learn how you, The Grommet Community, have changed their businesses for the better.
In this installment we're catching up with Eyal Levy, the Maker behind Yogibo –the new generation of bean bags. A Yogibo may resemble an old-school bean bag chair, but it definitely doesn’t feel like one. Sure, it has zillions of beads in it, like its 1970s predecessors. But the near-frictionless beads wrapped inside the zip-on Yogibo cover do a stellar job of conforming to your body’s shape.
We recently caught up with Eyal to learn more about his experiences as an entrepreneur growing a thriving business.
Tell us more about your design inspiration.
Our design is really based on fun vibrant colors, simple lines and functionality. By functionality, I mean that almost all of our products have at least one feature that’s not found in equivalent products in the market.
What three personality traits do think have helped you become a successful entrepreneur?
1. People person: I think I know how to read people fairly well. Whether hiring the right staff or building a relationship with customers and business partners, this is a critical piece of the equation.
2. Persistence: I love to say that entrepreneurship is running a marathon at a sprinter’s pace. You’ve got to be ready to accept long months with no days off and long days with no breaks. The key is to consistently keep going with high energy.
3. Versatility: You’ve got to be competent and knowledgeable in all aspects of the business. One minute you’ll be working on product development, the next minute is operations, followed by marketing, finance etc.
What would be the name of your biography?
From an Engineer to a Fungineer.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
A Chef. I loved everything about food.
What has surprised you most about starting a business?
A couple of things. First I didn’t anticipate how difficult it would to get even a very reasonable financing from banks. On the positive side, I was surprised by just how much happiness I got out of sharing the great reaction from our customers.
What has been the most rewarding part of business for you?
Knowing that our products are beneficial for people with special needs, especially for kids on the spectrum and with sensory issues. The letters we get from their parents make even the longest days worthwhile.
How has your business advanced since your launch on The Grommet? How has our community helped support Yogibo?
Our partnership with The Grommet is very important to us. It was our first online retailer and helped establish us as a national brand. Our sales have been consistent and contributed greatly to our success. We’re very thankful to be part of such a great partnership and have the support of The Grommet community.
To learn more about Yogibo, watch our video here.