Super Strange Startups
Elliot Franshaw, The Cannon
You may remember a piece we ran last year highlighting the oddities standing out in the sea of startups. Companies like the Something Store, where for only $10 you’ll receive an undisclosed item in the mail, or Air, who ship canned, fresh air around the globe. Some of those bizzare ideas failed (see GameCrush), but those that survived serve as a reminder that with the right idea, market, and work ethic, your super strange startup can succeed! Here are four more funky companies:
Founded in 2007, this Belgian-based company treats clients to dining experiences 15-stories above the ground. The concept originated when marketing exec David Ghysels teamed with bungee jumper Stefan Kerfkhos to design a one of a kind, aerial dinner. When word got out and their popularity grew, they franchised the concept, expanding to over 47 different countries. Clients utilize these craned culinary experiences globally as tools for product launches and special events.
App developer Spud Pickles produces three different iterations of the Ghost Radar app. This “gag” app polarizes users and critics (see extensive reddit). Whether you believe in the otherworldly or the app’s ability to detect specters in our midst, there’s no denying the reality of their numbers. Ghost Radar pulls in 100,000 new app users monthly.
Founded in 2015, Dog Parker works similarly to public phone charging lockers. Their primary product, Dog Spot, combines a location app, membership card, and secure kennels to provide users “a convenient way to shelter and protect your dog while on the run.” The kennels come with cameras so clients can check on their furry friends while grocery shopping, and boast locations from Brooklyn, NY to Bee Cave, TX.
When founder Justin Gignac’s coworker challenged him on the importance of package design, he decided to prove a point. He packaged trash from New York City into clear cubes with clean lettering. Twelve years and 1400 cubes later, Gignac’s creations reside in over 30 countries worldwide. He’s expanded into limited edition cubes for events, including St. Patty’s Day in Dublin and Barack Obama’s inauguration, and shows no sign of slowing down.