Posted on Nov 16, 2022 at 8:00am
1 million euros in 24 hours. That’s what rechargeable care product startup 900.care collected from about 1,800 investors on Nov. 9. Its co-founder, Aymeric Grange, puts it bluntly: “This participatory fundraiser has more of a community objective than a financial one, since the minimum amount to become an investor is just 16 euros, or two shares. 🇧🇷
The objective set between 1.5 and 2 million euros seems to be within reach, until the date scheduled for the end of 23 November. In more than three years of existence, 900.care raised more than 14 million euros. And among two million, in January 2022, it was labeled B-Corp, giving weight to its slogan “caring for you and the planet”.
In 2022, x 7 subscribers
The start-up came up with an ambition: to reduce water and plastic packaging in cosmetics and hygiene products. In addition to its historic products – toothpaste in chewable tablets, deodorant sticks for refills, shower gel in rolls to dissolve in water and refills – the 900.care line has been expanded with a shampoo and a solid shampoo, micellar water, mouthwash or hand foam.
These products are sold online and by subscription. That is, every four months on average for a single person, every two months for a couple, you receive a package of recharges straight to your mailbox. The price: 13.9 euros on average per person per month, according to the start-up’s estimates.
Everything is made in France (Eure-et-Loir, Brittany, Sologne) with 95% ingredients of natural origin. The reusable containers are made from 50% recycled plastic and produced in Oyonnax (Ain).
Finally, from the non-French-French, only the English-sounding name remains – a reference to the 900 seconds, or 15 minutes, that we dedicate to hygiene on average per person and per day (the famous “care” in English) during which you too can “take care of the planet”.
120,000 liters of water not transported
The money will thus allow it to meet demand and, above all, to invest in R&D in its Parisian laboratory, which has three full-time employees. But also to expand its community of 45,000 customers, or “7 times in 2022”, says the businessman, who is pleased to have retained more than 66% of his first customers. Finally, to test itself internationally, mainly in Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom. For the time being, its products are only sold in France, Switzerland and Belgium.
If 900.care told Echos START that it reached 400,000 euros in turnover in 2020, it does not intend to disclose more recent figures, but “prefers to measure in terms of impact”, justifies Aymeric Grange. Before listing: 850,000 plastic waste not produced (which coincides with the number of refills sold), 446 kg of CO2 emissions avoided and 146,000 liters of water not transported.
More than ten years of friendship and 17 permanent collaborators
This entrepreneurial adventure was born out of a friendship: that of Aymeric Grange and Thomas Arnodo. They met in preparatory class in Lyon, before joining HEC for the first and Edhec for the second. Upon leaving school, Aymeric Grande joined BCG Consulting for six years and moved between the Paris and New York offices. At that time, a friend of his set up two companies, including ‘Soyez BCBG’, an intermediation platform specializing in dry cleaning. Before tackling hygiene, he sold his app to the 5 dry group.
Today, the two friends are at the head of a team of 17 people with fixed-term contracts. Aymeric Grange took over administration and strategy, while Thomas Arnodo takes care of production management and product logistics.
According to the two surveys carried out with its customers in 2021 and 2022, the profile of the latter is heterogeneous: 55% live in cities with less than 100,000 inhabitants and are between 18 and 55 years old. But one thing unites them: they call themselves “green starters”. “They are those who know that things have to be changed, without quite knowing how. We want to make ecology accessible to anyone who wants good products that smell good. 🇧🇷
Most products are currently sold out. The co-founder guarantees that there will be new stocks by the end of the year, and above all that subscribers will pass prio’, without cheating.