The Mercury

Updates from The Folde. Published monthly for our management, advisory, and investor teams.

January 2021 - Company Update

News & Headlines:

Restructuring Austin Operations

Instead of only operating overnight, we opened a day-shift in January with our most veteran folders. This has increased our overall capactiy but has also created the need to replace staff on the night shift. The night shift has been a minor leagues of sorts 

Q1 Rocks

  • Q1 Gross Revenue Goal: $300k
  • Q1 Profit Goal: $5k
  • Acquire a Laundromat: The long-term strategy here is to grow through building and buying laundromats. We're probably going to get used to this being on the rocks list. 
  • Develop Metrics for 3 Media Web: We hired a digital marketing firm. This rock will be updated soon after discussing with the firm, 3 MediaWeb.
  • Add 'Hang Dry Bag' to Service Options: We're adding a way to upsell customers who are looking for higher-quality treatment. Our first crack at this is adding a 'Hang Dry' Bag to the service options. 
  • Document & Detail Hiring & Onboarding Process: Last quarter we set out to improve our training and operating procedures. It led to the development of our Standard Operating Procedures. Now, we'll shift our focus to HR. As a service, growth is highly dependent on people. Hiring is a full-time job and we've got a lot on our plates. The goal here is to develop and document our systems to then delegate internally. 
  • Middle Management Structure for Stand-alone Nightshift: We have the personnel needed to add a middle management structure to the nightshift. Q1 will be spent developing the meeting & operating structure for these two managers to run things without an owner being there every night.

Burying the Lead

We're working on raising the funding to acquire Riverside, our current laundromat partner.

We're aiming for a $1-$1.1mm offer. Next week we will have more information on loan packages from the two most-interested banks - Live Oak and Eastern Funding. 

That'll leave some money for us to raise as an equity injection. As soon as we have more information on a deal structure, we will be in contact with potential investors. 

Scorecard Review

Below are the weekly charts for management's KPIs. Christmas was probably the last holiday we'll be closed for. Moving forward, we'll be staffed and operating 24/7/365. There's no great way to handle holidays and now that we have the staff to handle it, we'll be paying holiday rates to make sure we're operating non-stop. You can download the weekly report here

Quick Notes:

  • Austin operations grew to the point of hitting more capacity issues. We made an adjustment to now run a day shift 9am-5pm on top of our night shift 9pm-3am. This has boosted morale and efficiency - though may impact some operating metrics. I'd imagine we will be 24/7 in no time. This is certainly a step in that direction.
  • We signed up with 3 Media Web. Thanks to Ben, we have some professionals running our digital strategy. They're focusing on getting improved data on customer acquisition, making Google Ad conversions more efficient, and improving our SEO rankings. Want to see how Ben's digital strategy impacted growth in 2020? I'll let you guess when he started helping.
    • Related: Ashley delivered the photos from the second photoshoot of 2020. You can see the full gallery here
  • Product changes that were scheduled for Jan 1 release have all been released. These include:
    • Adding new route availability which has increased capacity for drivers and opened new ordering windows for customers. 
    • Discontinuing custom hanging preferences. There isn't a price we could charge that's high enough to go back to this. This has saved supply costs, labor hours, and logistics headaches. 
    • Reduced print materials on packaging. This has cut print pricing 70% on each order. And, probably has some benefit for labor hours and logistics headaches too.
  • Houston redesigned its warehouse to mimic the Austin warehouse in order to increase capacity. Houston also now officially has a full-time driver.
  • A few of the recent software requests have been developed. Instead of working to come up with workarounds for hourly employees, the Ops Team has been working on co-developing software solutions.

Until next month...

If you scrolled past it at the beginning, here's your second chance. The yearly review has some great perspective on where we are, where we started, and where we are trending. 

Worth a peek. A lot of hard work went into 2020. We knew it would be a marathon, not a sprint. Thanks to everyone here for making it happen.