Expressed opinions Entrepreneur Contributors are their own.
Founded in 2017, MOLECULE is a digital-native mattress and bedding brand that aims to provide people with “restorative sleep” to enhance performance. Among the high-profile ambassadors are Michael Phelps, Russell Wilson and Alex Morgan. I enjoyed interviewing Albert Oh, founder and CEO of MOLECULE, and we rolled back the sheets to find out how he brought his dream business to life.
Why did you decide to start a mattress company?
As an athlete and serial entrepreneur, I have always wanted to perform at the highest possible level – for my family, my work colleagues, my friends and my own health and sleep is crucial for her. I realized that the item I spent 1/3 of my life on wasn’t cutting for me, so I decided we could build a team to create something better.
What was your business background before you started?
I have always been an entrepreneur. I have launched both technology B2B and B2C products, a proprietary touch interface company that later sells to Google and Verifone (acquired), a licensing network backed by Khosla, and a few others.
Related: Why are entrepreneurs not getting enough sleep?
How do you differentiate yourself from your competitors?
We knew we needed to have a great product and thus partnered early on with Cornell University sleep scientists and a few sleep doctors. We have learned that the average person moves 77 times per night, most of which is responsible for the increase in heat. We also saw heat loss in another group: bedridden hospital patients. These patients often have bedsores made and the hospital solution is to place a fan under the mattress to keep the air flowing. It was the “aha moment.” We need a mattress and bed portfolio that has maximum heat dissipation and airflow and which is extremely comfortable and comfortable for our body. Our patent-pending top mattress layer offers this through the use of a proprietary foam. And form factor.
You were recently acquired by FXI. What went into that decision?
We respect FXI from the very first day we worked with them, because they are our mattress suppliers. They have unparalleled access to thousands of foam blends, many of which are proprietary, and a nationwide footprint that allows us to reach 97% of all U.S. customers within 48 hours. So we are confident that their IP and distribution, combined with a world-class retail team, will drive MOLECULE to be a brand with longevity for decades to come.
Related: 8 Reasons Sleep is crucial for entrepreneurs and leaders
What credits do you have with your success in growing your business?
The driving force behind MOLECULE’s banner 2021 is finding the best mix of digital / DTC business and wholesale partners to create a truly all-channel strategy. We have an incredible team here at MOLECULE. This is a small but very strong, teamwork-oriented and goal-driven group.