LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY)- An Acadiana woman entrepreneur launched her business just before the pandemic. Now, she’s sharing her ups and downs about growing the business.
Laurel Hess is the Founder and CEO of Hampr, an on-demand laundry service that will pick up your laundry and return it freshly folded the next day. Even through the pandemic, Laurel has found ways to adapt to the trying times.
“We found Hampr officially in 2019,” said Hess. “It came about as an idea when I returned home from a business trip and I have two small boys. My husband and I both work, and there was laundry everywhere and we had t-ball opening day and three birthday parties and no idea how I was going to get it done, and then we got mad because there was all these apps for grocery delivery and home maintenance and there’s nothing for laundry which takes so much longer than those things.”
It was then Hampr was created. Laurel has a marketing background, previously working as the Sales Marketing Manager of the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans. She reflects on being creative while working with a limited budget back then which helped in shaping Hampr.
“Hampr is a membership-based system. It’s $39 per year and that gets you access to the platform and your first four pop-up hamper bags and then you get those bags in the mail. You fill them up. You download the app and scan your bags to place the order. It gets claimed by a washer who will then come pick it up, take it to their home, wash, dry, fold, and deliver it back to you the next day and you can set your preferences. We’ll wash exactly like you do,” explained Hess.
And that’s not just all… Hampr recently announced it has launched Presto Health prescription delivery service. Presto Health will provide Ochsner Lafayette General patients discharged from its urgent cares, emergency rooms, clinics and telemedicine visits in Lafayette Parish the option to have their prescription medications delivered from its outpatient pharmacy to their homes for free.”
“Adding another service line helped us survive,” said Hess. “Adding prescription delivery for Ochsner Lafayette General has really helped us extend our runway and our usefulness and given us more hooks into the platform that we built.”
Laurel has this advice for other small business owners… “When laundry died down and busy mom wasn’t so busy anymore, we looked at what we had really done well, and it wasn’t just laundry. It was this flexible delivery platform and so we added another service line to compliment it that worked for the pandemic so I would say if you’re a small business owner, look at what you‘ve made and look at it in a different way and maybe see if it can be implemented in other cases.”