These Ex-Casper Execs Are Making Our Pets Healthy Again
Our pets are fat. The New York Times says that 56% of dogs (and 60% of cats) are at an unhealthy weight. We used to just scoop some food from a 50-lb. bag and kick the bowl toward Fido. Not anymore.
Terri Rockovich — the second employee from Casper (CSPR) — and two of her former colleagues want to give our pets a better option. I recently got on the phone with Rockovich to learn more about Jinx, her vision to help us take better care of our animals, and a big opportunity to be the leading holistic pet brand.
From mattresses to kibble (with help from Will Smith and Halsey)
Before joining the Casper team to re-invent the way people shop for mattresses, Rockovich got experience at an agency working with both big and small brands on their digital strategy. Through her role, she developed a passion for growth companies and then went to ModCloth less than two years after its first seed funding.
After working on ModCloth’s marketing team, Rockovich transitioned to Casper where she met her co-founders Sameer Mehta and Michael Kim. While there, she helped build a custom multi-channel marketing program from the ground up and grew the marketing budget from $30,000 per month to $7 million per month by the time she left.
While Rockovich and her co-founders worked on different teams, they quickly became friends. She cites meeting them as “the thing that I gained the most” from her time at Casper. Mehta and Kim also have social media, consumer, and technology backgrounds.
To help with their new venture, Jinx received funding from Initialized Capital, Align Ventures, Brand Foundry, Sinai Ventures, Wheelhouse Group, &vest, NQV8, and a group of celebrity investors including actor Will Smith, rapper Nas, singer Halsey, NFL hall-of-famer Michael Strahan, soccer star Daniel Sturridge, and late-night host Lilly Singh.
Jinx is hoping to be a major player in the United States pet food market, one that Report Buyer expects to grow to $34 billion by 2022. (And that’s not including all of the other product lines that conscious pet owners need to purchase.)
Report Buyer states that “people are getting more aware of harmful preservatives and other additives used in the edible substance for pets and hence, the demand for premier and organic food for pets is increasing globally.”
Rockovich and her team saw a huge opening for a new type of experience—one that put the customer and their pet first:
Having done the research, we also left with a feeling like there weren’t any brands that were built for the millennial. And therefore, it was really hard to find a compelling brand that was a bag that I was proud to leave on my kitchen table… one that really met the needs or suited the needs of my dog—which is, by no means, a wolf or predator or a carnivore.
The pet market reflects this. In their Millennials as Pet Market Consumers, Packaged Facts reports that between 2007 and 2015, millennial spending in the U.S. accounted for 43% of growth in the number of pet owners. And millennial spending power will be even more significant in the next decade.
Millennials are less concerned about brand name when it comes to their pets, and more concerned with natural and organic ingredients:
- 55% are willing to try holistic and natural-branded supplements before trying conventional medication
- 69% are more likely to consider brands whose recipes use naturally-made ingredients than those of mass-produced foods
- 75% of dog owners agree that pet safety is a key consideration in the products they buy
The new line of premium products are made with ingredients good enough for us. Actually, probably better — Jinx food never has soy, corn, wheat, fillers, or artificial or organ meat!
Rockovich and her team worked extensively with a range of dog food formulators, pet nutritionists, veterinarians, and other experts to settle on recipes with probiotics and superfoods designed to make your dogs stronger and come with 100% satisfaction guarantee:
The classic dry food ranges from $25 to $75 for a one-time purchase and comes in three flavors:
- Salmon, Brown Rice and Sweet Potato
- Chicken, Brown Rice and Avocado
- Chicken, Sweet Potato and Egg (Grain-Free)
All three formulas include a patented BC30 probiotic!
A perfect way to reward your pup for being a good doggy. Made with slow-cooked chicken and either vitamin-rich mango or fiber-rich sweet potato.
Currently sold out, so must be good, but the Jinx dog sauce is a slow-simmered bone broth that’ll help lure even the most picky eaters.
Thoughts on Casper
While Rockovich has been out of the Casper business for about two years, she credits much of Jinx’s successful launch to her time at the direct-to-consumer pioneer and she’s excited to see the company grow in the public markets:
I think that they built something really special. And as mentioned, I think that it’s a huge milestone… As a former employee, as one of the first employees, I’m just really proud.
Casper started trading on the New York Stock Exchange on February 6th priced at $12 per share.
Jinx officially launched in January 2020 and is available at thinkjinx.com.