"We want to change the behavior around the property on the planet," says Thomas McLeod, co-founder of Omni. First, he built an on-demand storage business, where you can pick up items at home in just two hours, pay a monthly fee to store them by size and get them temporarily for free every time. that you need from them. Now he wants to help you make money or offset your storage costs by renting out your business to other users and sharing revenue with Omni 50/50.
"The storage business is good." The market business is big. "We needed to build the storage first," explains McLeod. "Omni was already working very well with 100,000 items in his dungeon. I am a user and the quality of service is amazing, I ask them to put away all my camping equipment, and to let me down every time I go in the woods for the weekend, and everything works so well that Is like having a huge closet in the cloud.
This is partly because the 48 Omni employees, including the muscled employees who carry your stuff, actually have inventory at startup. This drives them to offer an exceptional experience so that the business keeps growing. Its warehouses reach operational profitability when they reach about 40% of their capacity, and all recurring storage revenues make their unit savings significantly better than starts in areas like food delivery that spends resources for payments punctual.
The three-year-old start-up has now raised $ 14.7 million from investors like Highland Capital Partners, who sees a future where people own and buy less while renting more.
Omni is now available in the San Francisco Bay Area, from Berkeley to Stanford, and I would recommend it if you have bikes, boxes or other giant items that clutter your home. This is often cheaper than renting a storage unit, with fixed monthly costs of $ 3 per major item and $ 7.50 per closed container. Yet, considering that you have valuable things sitting in the dark, it would be nice to make some money out of what you store.
This is how the Omni rental works. Earlier this year, the company allowed you to designate friends who could borrow your stuff, but now you can charge strangers. You simply choose one of your items that Omni stores, set a price you deem reasonable and Omni lists for you on its rental market. All you rent is covered by a $ 2,000 insurance policy, and Omni takes pictures before delivery, pickup and at his warehouse so he knows who is responsible for it. there is damage.
If you need a drill to improve your home, a beautiful road bike for a long ride or a Halloween costume, Omni can rent it for you. a lot cheaper than you and you never have to leave your house. You can even rent this Snapchat hot dog costume for $ 20 a day instead of buying it for $ 80.
"Omni is more convenient than" Amazon Prime, "said an Omni spokesman. "You can look for something that you are thinking of buying and see if it is available to rent first." And even the free two-day delivery of Amazon does not beat Omni who can get you in a few hours for $ 3 in convenience or free the next day. Ultimately, Omni wants to give homeowners hiring price suggestions to help them maximize their take, avoiding guessing the adequacy of the on-demand offer.
Omni will have to encourage a whole new model of ecommerce behavior to get rentals from the ground up. And it must maintain quality assurance because some lost items or broken rental items could scare users. But the tests revealed that 60% of renters were not already stocking equipment with Omni, which makes it could become a powerful lead generator. And in the long run, as autonomous cars, warehouse robots and logistics systems improve, Omni's profits should increase.
McLeod one day imagines that a musician could start by renting equipment instead of buying it, lowering the barrier to the entry of new hobbies and even occupations . And he thinks people might be looking to buy better quality goods for their own benefit and to mark higher rental fees. McLeod tells TechCrunch, "I do not think we'll ever stop the fact that people own things, but there should be a democratization of access."