Lunch with LoveSac Founder Shawn Nelson

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So I met Shawn a couple months ago at a rural economic development
summit put on by Senator Bennett. Both of us were breakout speakers. We
decided then to get together for lunch sometime.

Monday I drove to the LoveSac world headquarters. After a few minutes,
Shawn limped out. He told me he tore his ACL wakeboarding and had
recently had surgery. So here’s one of my most embarrassing moments
ever: I asked him how they got him down from the mountain.

He looked at my kind of funny and said, “I was wakeboarding.” Duh.

It doesn’t get any worse than that. What was I thinking?!?

Okay, but the lunch was excellent after that, and we discussed LoveSac,
building companies, online marketing, blogging and more. Shawn is a
great guy. He is building a world class brand, with almost 70 stores,
venture backing, and great ideas. The first, of course, was to create
and own the “oversized bean bag category” but a more recent brilliant
idea is the concept of building customized furniture in your home using
“Sactionals” — changeable, washable, DuraFoam / Memory-Foam furniture
building blocks. This is awesome stuff. Here’s a little news blurb about Sactionals.

This is a great company to watch. Shawn is amazing. (Check out Shawn’s blog.)

And they’ve got some great consumer trends on their side.

At Shop.org’s annual Las Vegas meeting yesterday I learned in the
Consumer Trends session that teens are more likely than the average
internet user to shop online, and get this: they are 2.9 times more
likely to buy furniture online than the average internet shopper.

According to Retail Forward ShopperScape, this is how the shopping
habits of the young are different from average online shoppers.
(Legend: 100 means same as average online shoppers.)

Furniture 292
Shoes 208
Everyday personal care products 202
Cosmetics/beauty care 172
Fine jewelry 160
Online music downloads 153
Clothing 142
Home accent pieces/housewares 138
DVDs 125
Consumer electronics 125
Personal computers/computer peripherals 122
Books 111
CDs 101
Computer software 66
Sporting goods 50
Toys 47

Since the whole LoveSac brand and lifestyle appeals to young people
already, LovSac’s online opportunities with their Sactionals furniture
lines are huge. (I think both the furniture category and the home
accent pieces/housewares category bode well for LoveSac.) This data is
not promising for software companies.

Microsoft has a nice case study about LoveSac, which focuses on their accounting and information systems.

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