Zero waste home goods brand Bambooloo has raised more than US$250,000 via equity crowdfunding in order to further its plastic-free mission and launch its bamboo household consumers goods to the United Kingdom.
Owned and operated by The Nurturing Co (TNC), the Singapore-based sustainable products e-commerce startup aims to provide consumers with safer, healthier, and cost-effective alternatives to toilet paper, kitchen towel and face tissues, with the promise that its products help consumers to reduce their carbon footprint and water usage while preventing slow deforestation.
TNC was started back in 2018 by co-founder David Ward in the United States as a luxury toilet paper made from 100% sustainable bamboo. Apart from its environmentally friendly products, the brand also has 100% plastic-free packaging. All its boxes are made from recycled wood pulp which is locally sourced or obtained from local mix fibre. The same applies to its outer boxes, GrabBags, and cartons. Furthermore, all these are printed using non-toxic vegetable inks making them reusable, recyclable, and biodegradable, and safe for waterways.
In addition to toilet roll, Bambooloo also sells a bamboo-based personal safety mask-line, bamboo fiber wipes and launched the CanO water brand in Singapore to help curb plastic-bottle water consumption.
According to the company, it takes just 2.6 gallons of water and 132g of carbon to produce 220 sheets of its bamboo toilet paper, compared to 37 gallons of water and 440g of carbon for toilet paper made out of wood pulp.
We took the decision to launch first in the UK under Bambooloo UK Ltd as our first main market outside Singapore, as we felt that the scale of opportunity, early and promising development of the sustainable alternatives sector, and improving trade relationships with Singapore created a good set of signals for the timing to move on this planDavid Ward, Co-Founder of Bambooloo
193 investors based in the UK and Singapore invested in the oversubscribed equity crowdfunding round on Seedrs, all together receiving a minority stake of 7.43 per cent at a pre-money valuation of US$3.1 million.
The raised capital will help with UK expansion plans, as well as help foster the launch of new products.
In an interview with e27, co-founder David Ward explained why the company chose UK to expand its brand. “We took the decision to launch first in the UK under Bambooloo UK Ltd as our first main market outside Singapore, as we felt that the scale of opportunity, early and promising development of the sustainable alternatives sector and improving trade relationships with Singapore created a good set of signals for the timing to move on this plan.”
Ward believes it’s key for companies to provide more sustainable options to consumers. “Daily essentials are [needed] in every home in today’s world. But importantly here in Singapore, we see an increasing opportunity to link what we offer to the overall sustainability goals of the government and the nation as a whole. This aligns directly with those of the Singapore government in seeking to reduce waste, better manage resources and create a smarter less impacting society.”
With more than 70% of consumers seeking better less impacting alternatives, we felt that the time to push international was nowDavid Ward, Co-Founder of Bambooloo
Ward has also developed a program that allows for the tailoring of product specification to suit exact market needs, thus avoiding the pitfalls of trying to offer products designed for another market.
In a press release seen by Green Queen, Ward explained how the program helps respond to the global need. “We have created a turnkey program for partners to plug into with the express mission of making affordable plastics free sustainable choices available everywhere as soon as possible. We can bring our expertise and knowledge to bear for our partners allowing them to focus on the development of the market, whilst we oversee the manufacturing and product development needs specific to their market requirements. But always without the plastics and always 100 per cent sustainable.”
Since its last angel seed round from TNC and a small group of investors in Singapore and the US, the brand claims to have grown 280% in 2020, despite the challenges of operating during the global Covid-19 pandemic.
Last year in December, Bambooloo expanded into Malaysia through its partner Starkers. Aside from Singapore and Malaysia, its products are also available in New Zealand, which is a part of the brand’s five year licensing deal with a partner in the country. Going forward, the brand has planned its next Seedrs funding round in the summer, early autumn of 2021.
Singaporean consumers can purchase its products on e-commerce websites such as Redmart, Cold Storage, and Lazada.
According to Ward, the pandemic has in some ways created awareness among consumers about the impact they can have on the natural world as well as how basic daily use essentials like toilet paper and anti-bacterial wipes can have sustainable alternatives. “And with more than 70% of consumers seeking better less impacting alternatives we felt that the time to push international was now.”
Lead image courtesy of Bambooloo