Have you read our About Page yet? Yes, it's cute, but it doesn't get into the nitty gritty of our story and how we got started. If you want the short version, check out our About Page here. If you want the long version, stick around to hear the good stuff . . . (and you might even see some wedding photos).
The EzPacking Story
Written by: Solomon Mizrachi
It all started in San Diego, CA in 2014. My sister just graduated from high school and was preparing for a gap year program before college. She would be traveling to thirteen countries throughout the year and packing was going to be a challenge. My mom and sister looked around for a product to help them pack my sister's suitcases. Being a notorious over packer, my sister was trying to find a way to pack her entire life into two suitcases.
Even after my sister flew off, the problem continued bothering my mom. She also had trouble packing for her own trips. After speaking to her friends, she noticed they had similar problems. There was no solution on the market that completely let you see into your suitcase while also compartmentalizing and organizing items.
Being a busy bee, she started thinking of ways to solve this problem. For the next few months she worked on designing a prototype for a product to help herself pack and organize a suitcase.
I Get A Call
I was in Argentina in November of 2014. I had graduated from university that May and took some time off to travel and clear my head. Ironically, my mom gave me some packing cubes to use on my backpacking trip. I won't point fingers and name the brand, but those cubes didn't really work. I ended up giving up on them a few days into the trip.
So I get the call from my mom. She tells me she was working on a new idea and wanted some help. When was I coming home? And could I *maybe* help her launch her business idea for a month?
I had no plans at that point and my trip was coming to an end. By January 2015, I was back in San Diego helping my mom launch her product, which by that point already had a name (you guessed it... EzPacking!). My role was to help my mom receive the merchandise and help her get started.
Lucy, our cocker spaniel poodle, was appointed as our warehouse and fulfillment manager. While she didn't really notice that she got the job, she was there every step of the way, supervising us to make sure we were doing things right. We couldn't have gotten this far without her diligent supervision!
Want to learn more about Lucy? Check out her bio here.
My dad became our legal and tax adviser. Having practiced law for many years, he knew how to advise us on issues related to starting a business, paying taxes, and all the other "fun stuff" you don't know you have to do without a lawyer's help.
The plan was for me to help my mom receive her merchandise and get started. Then I would move to LA and get a job in real estate finance (that's what I studied in school).
The business plan was to sell EzPacking around San Diego. My mom had this notion that starting a business was a fun hobby. EzPacking would be a fun product to have at home and be able to sell to friends. She could also go to local farmers markets every week and sell.
All of our assumptions turned out to be wrong. Yes, my mom has A LOT of friends and many of them bought EzPacking. Not just to be nice, but because they genuinely needed help packing their families on trips. But after a few weeks, we realized my mom didn't have that many friends. Farmers markets were very difficult places to sell. While we learned very valuable feedback by pitching EzPacking live to real people, we didn't succeed in farmers markets.
A "Bold" Idea... Why Not Make a Website
After our lukewarm success with our initial business plan, we needed to pivot and find a new channel. I was working on making a website (even though I had never made one before). Trust me, it wasn't pretty but it was a start! The first batch of photos (like the one above) were even taken on my childhood bed at home...
I was learning about digital marketing and how to sell online. After a few weeks, we had made more money selling online than we did the entire day standing in the sun at the farmers market. That was the last day we went to the farmers market...
Throughout this process, my mom realized that she loved being involved in the business, but she didn't want to be the business. I was getting excited by our online efforts and it seemed like that was the way our company was going. My mom and I discussed. We decided that I would buy the inventory, reimburse her for all of the expenses up to that point, and run the company myself. My mom would help in the business as needed and on her schedule without the day to day pressure of running a business.
A New Direction
By June of 2015, the transaction was finalized and I took over the day to day operations of EzPacking. I had just turned 22 years old and still had no idea how to run a business. Each week had new challenges to overcome and new possibilities.
Looking back as of 2018, we have had three really fun, hectic and exciting years. My mom and I have both grown a lot as entrepreneurs and EzPacking has too. We've added three more amazing people to our team and my girlfriend Tali (now my wife) even became the creative director!
Each month, EzPacking is growing and we are too. At the end of the day, we are most proud of the fact that we are helping moms (like my mom) stay organized, de-cluttered and attain peace of mind while traveling. We have invented a new way to pack with our clear packing cube system.
Last year, we helped thousands of moms around the world!
Never in a million years did we think we would get where we are now. Not to mention being featured on NPR's "How I Built This" podcast (go to 32:50) and reviewed by dozens of awesome blogs.
We are grateful of the fact that moms come to our site and trust us to help them with an often dreaded but important task: PACKING!
We are excited for where this journey will take us. Please feel free to contact us with anything you need. We are just an email away!
Solomon, Monica, Tali and Lucy (adorable cockapoo shown earlier).
If you want more organizing tips, the latest on EzPacking contests, sales, and giveaways, don't forget to subscribe to our newsletter.
P.S. Still wondering about those wedding photos mentioned at the beginning of the post? Here's the story...
On May 12th, 2018 I proposed and she said yes! Tali and I had been dating since Junior year of High School... so 9 years later we decided to tie the knot.
Our families said, "finally...."
Since we both grew up in San Diego, it was obvious we wanted to have the ceremony surrounded by our families in our home town.
Sunday, July 7th 2019 - we got married! It was one of the best days of our lives.
It was the most magical and special weekend spent with our closest friends and families. We had the BEST time! Here are some highlights from the night, because who doesn't like seeing wedding photos? :)
Love you Tali!