Venture Stories: Doing For Atoms What AWS Did For Bits with Jesse Genet of Lumi

  • What does Lumi do? Lumi helps brands source and manage all of their packaging. Things like boxes, tissue paper, packing slips etc…

  • Building a business that is super niche isn’t new for Jesse: My co-founder and I ran a business that made fabric dye that develops its color in sunlight. We ran that business for 4 years.

  • The pitch to businesses: Why wrangle with 15 or 20 different packaging vendors when you can spend that time running your business?

  • The packaging industry right now is complicated: It is still a network of brokers. It is still relationship-driven. There are costs added with each additional layer that sits between manufacturers and the company buying the packaging.

  • The future opportunity for Lumi: As e-commerce grows, packaging will grow as well. E-commerce is still less than 15% of all retail purchases.

  • What makes Lumi hard to compete with? Packaging is boring and hard.

  • Why do things that are boring and hard? I think going down a rabbit hole that you feel no one else will go down is a valid human effort. It may not work out, but you can’t pioneer on a well-traveled path.

  • Why companies should invest in packaging: For direct to consumer companies packaging is the new storefront.

  • Every business process is becoming a separate company created to serve product makers: Lumi is one example. Another one is Happy Returns. They manage the entire reverse logistics process. They handle the entire process of customers returning products, instead of a company dealing with that process themselves.

  • Great quote from Jesse’s twitter bio: I stuck to a simple idea for an unreasonable amount of time.

  • Full podcast here.