Interior designers, architects, and other home renovation professionals are one of the most profitable ad targets. If you explain to a person like this that our wallpapers are the best of the best once, they will make dozens of apartments with them in the same style. Crazy return on investment!
One of the mechanics for achieving a result like this is sending out samplers. The colors are not poorly rendered online, and the texture isn’t rendered at all. The designer may not feel like going all the way to the showroom. But they get a piece of cloth delivered to their home, then they might look and see if that’s what they need.
Material Bank, the American startup of the day, is a marketplace for such samplers. For an architect, this is a platform where they can click through all sorts of samples and have them delivered by mail absolutely free of charge as soon as the next day. For the manufacturers, the startup promises an audience of designers and a solution to all their logistics issues. Besides, Material Bank checks whether the professional is indeed a professional with a license or any other document to prove their professionalism. Regular apartment owners picking materials for themselves don’t get admitted to the platform.
The startup brought in USD 175M in its recent round, the valuation reached almost USD 2B.
Alexander made his career in Russian internet companies including Mail.Ru, Rambler, RBC. From 2016 to 2018 he was Chief Strategy and Analytics officer in Mail.Ru Group. In this position, he worked on M&A, investments, and new project launches. In 2018 he became Deputy CEO in Citymobil, a Russian Uber-like company that was invested by Mail.Ru Group and Sberbank (the biggest Russian bank), then he left the company to launch his own projects. Now Alexander is a co-founder of United Investors – the platform for co-investments in Russian early-stage startups. His blog #startupoftheday (#стартапдня) is one of the most popular blogs about startups in Russia.