If you are the shameful owner of a storage locker (don’t fret, we are too), tracking down your Great-Uncle Parker’s vintage leg lamp is as exhilarating as renewing your license at the DMV. More often than not, storage units are inconveniently located and quickly become a forgotten wasteland of mementos past – until now. Breaking the lock on conventional storage is STORD, a digital platform and mobile app that allows individuals to list, browse, and rent unique storage spaces in your area (like your next door neighbor with the double garage).
Whether you have an empty basement just itching to store an antique dresser, or in desperate need for a space to house your jet ski for the winter, STORD has you covered. We recently caught up with the man behind the stockpile, CEO/Founder Sean Henry, to find out how he’s breaking into the $31B storage industry.
STORD is a community marketplace for individuals to list, browse, and rent unique storage spaces in their area — online or on a mobile phone. STORD circumvents the traditional bleak, unfriendly, and inconvenient storage facility and provides friendly storage in your neighborhood. Whether an empty closet at your neighbor’s house, or a private garage across town, STORD is the easiest way for people to get personalized self-storage and monetize their extra space without the hassle of traditional storage options.
What problem are you solving?
Traditionally, the empty rooms and closets in your house remain just that — empty. For hosts, we are providing a passive method to monetize your excess space. Storage facilities are expensive and inconvenient; no one wants to enter a maze to find their stuff. For renters, no longer are dark and cavernous storage buildings part of your route, with STORD you can connect with a host in your area to create a personalized and safe storage experience.
For hosts, with unused space in the basement, attic, closet, or garage, the headache of finishing a basement or cleaning out an attic does not always justify the effort. But what if those “unusable” spaces could start making you money? Money to pay for the renovations, pay your mortgage, or fund a weekend getaway… With STORD, as long as your space is secure and meets our minimum requirements, you can start renting it out today.
For renters, storage facilitates are usually uninviting places to visit. Traditional storage facilities can be inconvenient and imposing structures. There is, however, an undeniable need for storage. Boats, RV’s, business inventory, or even grandma’s couch you never sold, all need to be stored. So why not use your neighbor’s basement or the guy in the next gated community’s closet. Those people are just like you, but neater and have more space, or fewer kids and hobbies.Funding or bootstrapped:
The founding team has bootstrapped STORD. In an effort to expand our platform and marketing efforts, we are seeking an angel investment.
The team is looking for $250,000 in angel investment, with the goal of expanding our presence in the market. With the investment, we will add 3 employees and be able to expand our local operation. We are in a two-sided market and will expand our host user-base at a faster rate than our renter user-base with additional funding.
We are available to present our pitch to any interested investor; experience in fields involving either storage or marketplace commerce in the shared economy would offer synergistic advantages. Of course, we are grateful for all inquiries.
Describe the market/industry impact:
STORD is disrupting the $31B storage industry. This industry has remained largely stagnate without local or shared economy competition. There are nearly 350,000 Craigslist ads, and a variety of other postings on social media that demonstrate a demand for collaborative storage. STORD has tapped the clear demand for convenient and inexpensive storage, while on the flip side, providing a way to monetize excess space. We are changing both the way people store their belongings and providing an easy way for people to supplement their income from home. Ultimately, hosts will we be able to rent out their rooms for boxes and items instead of being forced to take on a roommate to help with the mortgage.
How’d you get the idea for it?
I got the idea while in Montreal, Canada on a business trip. I read an article on the sharing economy and recognized that there is a parallel to businesses such as Lyft, Uber, and Airbnb. Airbnb allows home and apartment owners to rent out their rooms, and Uber allows automobile owners to make money off the car they already own and operate. Like these models, Stord gives apartment dwellers and homeowners the ability to monetize the enormous asset they already own.
Going along with the gig-economy model, I originally proposed a shared parking model that would allow homeowners and parking-space owners to rent out their driveways and parking spaces, respectively. However, I quickly realized that the parking industry was oversaturated and did not have enough potential. So, I took this model and applied it to the storage industry, a largely untapped industry where rentals are high cost and recurring. After further refining the business model, STORD was established in 2015.
Who are your competitors and how do you stand out?
Traditional storage facilities and Craigslist are the only large-scale competition. STORD is the first network for person-to-person self-storage solutions. Unlike traditional storage options, we offer the most convenient and least expensive spaces available. Why? Because the spaces on STORD are in your own neighborhood, you negotiate the fees, and we create a friendly, neighborhood experience in an industry that is long overdue for an update.
How does Atlanta weave into your story?
As an Atlanta native, I am committed to the success of the company and the community. Initially, STORD was conceived to meet the need of the college storage seasonal market at Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University. But the market is larger and more lucrative. Atlanta is the perfect launching pad to expand regionally and nationally.