|The Power Pillow contains a lithium-polymer battery so you can recharge your phones or tablets while you're relaxing.|
Lisa Sutt’s brainwave for her new business arrived like a thunder bolt as she and her partner Geoff Martin were lounging in bed one afternoon not long ago. Geoff was on his iPhone talking to someone and bemoaning that his power was running out.
“If I had a pillow that could recharge my phone that would be awesome,” he remarked, as Lisa’s ears perked up, immediately attuned to the possibilities. (Fittingly, All Possibilities is the name of their company.)
It’s hard not to think of her leaping from the bed and running with the idea. Just three months later, she had finessed designs, consulted with a lithium battery expert, filed a provisional patent, attracted worldwide media attention and ran a Kickstarter campaign where she surpassed her fundraising goal by several thousand dollars. Now, with the support of 446 backers, her Power Pillow goes into production in early April with delivery soon after.
And the latest news? Lisa and Geoff will pitch their company for investment on CBC’s Dragon Den. The taping is scheduled for the end of this month.
“I got really excited by the idea and it was also not that crazy-hard to figure out,” says Lisa (BFA 1997), a freelance graphic artist and art director who now adds “pillow magnate” to her list of titles.
The Power Pillow is exactly that: a stylish pillow with a zipper compartment that holds a lithium-polymer battery to charge phones, tablets and other electronic devices. The battery can recharge a phone five to six times before it too has to be recharged; the idea is to have two battery packs so that one can always be charging. The pillows are available in seven contemporary styles, including polka dot, chevron and Ikat patterns, to fit with any décor. Prices start at $79.
“I think we can all relate … it’s the end of day and you’ve been using your phone all day but it’s running out of power. It’s the time when you want to relax, send those texts you’ve been thinking of, look up a recipe or play games … now with the Power Pillow, you can be doing all those things while charging your device at the same time.”
It’s been an incredible learning process for the Dartmouth couple, from figuring out how to get a provisional patent to establishing a trademark and building an e-commerce website. Geoff Lisa says her NSCAD education and interdisciplinary course of study have served her well for this entrepreneurial foray.
“You come out of NSCAD with a sense that you can do anything creative,” says Lisa. “It’s a place that gives you a great deal of confidence, especially in terms of trying new things and just going for it.”
Through their website, Lisa and Geoff are now taking orders for their invention. Visit power-pillow.com
LINKS: Here's a look at some of the media attention for the Power Pillow.