Mattress topper company Kloudes, operating under the belief that mattress retail has more room for disruption, launched on Wednesday as a pure-play retailer, according to a company press release.
The launch follows a Kickstarter campaign that netted the startup $18,151 in pre-orders.
Key to the product are its materials — including patented air foam, proprietary upcycled memory foam, perforated layers for airflow and a convection-cooled sleep system. The toppers launch is just the first of many products in research and development to debut this year, the company said.
Online startups like Casper, Leesa, Yogabed and Tuft & Needle have been having a field day, cutting through convoluted mattress retail by eschewing special sales or markdown events in favor of keeping their "mattress-fits-most" offers in basic bed sizes at a single price paired with long try-out times and free returns.
Along comes Kloudes, with the message that your old mattress could be made new with a topper at a fraction of the cost. In a statement, Kloudes founder Omar Alchaboun said while working on the product his team (who used their time and startup money doing heavy research and heavy sleeping) found that it can be useful not just in bedrooms but also for camping and other purposes. "Developing products like mattresses or mattress toppers isn't rocket science," he said in a statement.
The company says its topper has proven to enhance or restore the comfort level of new and old mattresses alike, improving worn-out, flattened mattresses, too hot or too firm mattresses or new ones that aren't "quite hitting the spot." Kloudes also claims that it extends the life cycle of mattresses and leads to cost-savings by extending the need for replacement beyond suggested five to seven years.
While Kloudes is aiming at the current disrupters in the space, it could benefit from the fact that they've alerted consumers to alternatives to mattress discounters and department stores. Those disrupters have poked a sleeping giant, initially in pure-play e-commerce and increasingly in brick and mortar.
In addition to opening 15 of its own concept stores, for example, Casper recently established a major partnership with Target, putting products in more than 1,200 Target stores, and with American Airlines, outfitting its fleet with Casper sleep systems in first class. (Target itself was reportedly enamored enough with the brand to offer $1 billion to acquire it outright, a deal that eventually went to sleep.) Previously, Casper had partnered with West Elm, but that retailer has since replaced that relationship with rival Leesa. As a result, the old ways are faltering: Longtime player Mattress Firm late last year announced it would close 200 stores as it deals with an untenable debt load.