UnPack Enters the ‘Shark Tank’: A Look Inside the Company

UnPack, a service that provides packed carry-ons with clothing and toiletries, entered the Shark Tank in Season 8.

We interviewed co-founder Andrew Zahornacky, who managed digital marketing for several fashion and hospitality brands before forming this startup, which is based in New York City. He started the company with Aaron Liskov, with whom he had a mutual friend. Their appearance on the Tank came about a producer reached out them.

Here’s what else he told us about…

How the Idea Came About

I worked with a lot of road warriors, and they would show up at the office wearing yesterday’s clothes. As a New Yorker, I disliked lugging a heavy backpack around the city and constantly forgetting things. We both wondered about a service to help very mobile people pick up the right clothes at their destination.

How it Works

To deliver a great suitcase, UnPack needs to know your size, style, where you’re going and what you’ll do there. We ask for this info in our Trip Builder when new users book a trip. Users who want to go ultra light can upgrade with toiletries, jackets, plus hiking and beach gear. Our team then selects clothes and gear from our brand partners to match your climate, style, and plans. We deliver UnPack to the hotel before check-in, and we include a no-brainer return label so travelers can leave UnPack with the hotel at checkout.

Where the Clothes in Your Custom Suitcase Come From

Here's an UNPACK we sent to #Chicago #traveling #travelhacking #packingsucks

A post shared by The Unpack (@the_unpack) on

Cutting-edge fashion and gear brands partner with UnPack to promote their brand to travelers. The model is a lot like other box companies, in which users get to experience really cool stuff without the stress of buying it all. Travel is great opportunity for brands to stand out because it really puts clothing to the test.

Nerves in the ‘Tank’

UnPack is a polarizing concept. After all, people have been packing for thousands of years, so we expected a ton of pushback. We are thrilled we got the chance to get the word out about travel without packing. But to answer your question, yes, very nervous.

Plans for the Future

Our service for leisure travelers will be available at hotels nationwide in 2017. We are also piloting a subscription program for unlimited work travel which will begin in New York and move to other cities. We’re looking at cities with advanced rush delivery networks and many business travelers.

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