A smarter way to keep the cupboard stocked
Bundant has A.I. and an internet-connected container to power hyper-organisation
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If you’ve ever opened the cupboard and realised you’ve run out of something essential, you know the pain point today’s startup is looking to solve.
They’re beginning with a consumer offering to help them train their A.I. model as they gear up to serve the B2B market. Scroll down to read all about Bundant.
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Bundant wants to keep cupboards stocked, with A.I. and a special container
Reliably re-ordering all those things you regularly run out of, like foodstuffs, washing and dishwasher tablets and the like, is an unsolved problem.
Running out of dishwasher tablets might be a minor inconvenience in the home, but for businesses it can be a significant issue.
You might remember Amazon’s short-lived Dash buttons, which you could hit when you were low on anything from bottled water to underwear. They ended up being a flop, but Bundant hopes it’s on to a winner with its more convenient solution.
The startup has developed a container that incorporates a WiFi-connected scale to monitor the amount of stock inside them. This hooks up their software, which can predict the optimal time to order new stock.
“Where we're spending most of our time and where we're doing the most innovation is in our predictive platform. Our A.I. model recognises different data points to predict when you're going to run out,” explains London-based founder and CEO Ike Cooke.
“In our pilot at the moment, we've got users testing based on mass [of the contents of the container], and then the model is predicting when they're going to run out. And we check that with the model to make sure that it's learning the right triggers for itself.”
Going to market
Bundant has its eyes squarely on the B2B market. Imagine, for example, cafes having all their stock in the startup’s containers, and using a software dashboard to specify whether they want to reorder at the best price or with an emphasis on stock management to ensure that stock arrives in good time before it runs out.
Or imagine a washing tablet brand selling branded Bundant containers that enable a de facto subscription, where users are automatically refilled before they run out of washing tablets.
But the startup isn’t rushing straight into an offering like that. Instead, it’s targeting consumers to help refine its tech.
“We recognise that to get the dataset that we need to train our model, we need a larger volume. So we're starting off with B2C… it's a way of earning revenue while training our model for the long term.”
The startup’s consumer messaging pitches Bundant as “your very own housekeeper… the kitchen cupboard organisation tool that keeps your home ticking along.”
There is a waitlist for the B2C launch. Once that happens, consumers will be able to buy the device at cost, with Bundant making its money from refills. Cooke says at launch, the product will focus on laundry and cleaning with supplies for washing machines and dishwashers.
“The reason we've picked that category is it was in the top three of what customers said they were most passionate about and most frustrated about. We're working with a large multinational on a dishwashing tablet. They're going to be our flagship supplier, and then we're augmenting that with every other brand.”
The story so far
Cooke’s life has involved a not-so-common career path that led her from chemical engineering to investment banking.
Craving more creativity, she left the UK to study to become a design engineer in the US and Japan, before returning to London to help startups with both their financial and design challenges.
All of this experience came together when she was on maternity leave with her first child and the spark of an idea that led to Bundant emerged. Realising life would be easier if more tasks at home were automated, she got in touch with Founders Factory, who incubated Bundant last year.
This allowed Cooke to develop the initial hardware herself, bring CTO Pedro Jurado onboard to build the predictive model, and launch pre-orders and marketing around the launch.
At present, Cooke and Jurado are fine-tuning the product for launch. This includes figuring out the best way to measure contents of the containers for the best results.
“'I’m a design engineer (and) aesthetics are very important for the end user. But on the software side, that's where I would say most of our work and time goes into to make sure that we're super accurate.
“Bundant’s not going to work for anyone if it's not predicting when you're going to run out, because that's the whole point of our startup!”
The launch is likely to take place in January 2024, as they’ve identified that after the new year as being when demand for products like Bundant picks up.
The startup is targeting hyper-organised people such as parents who like to keep their home in order.
“When you look at TikTok hashtags, like #Refills or #RefillDay or #LaundryDay, you've got billions and billions of views, and that's just Gen-Z. So it's not unsurprising that that was going to be a beachhead for us,” says Cooke.
“The roadmap is to make sure that Bundant is in people's homes in the new year, and then start training our model with all the data that we're getting from consumers so that we can then move on to serve the B2B space.
“We're kicking off B2B probably with individual cafes, as opposed to going straight for an airport like Heathrow to start off with, because we want to get volume, get as many data points, teach our algorithms, and then take it from there.”
Going deeper on Bundant
Details on their funding, vision, competition, and challenges:
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