Despite COVID-19 crisis, this d-to-c cat brand is still launching
With the coronavirus forcing most consumers indoors and the economy on the ropes, most new brands might be hitting pause on their launch dates—but not Cat Person. The direct-to-consumer seller of food, toys and other supplies for cats is forging ahead with its debut on Tuesday because it says its offerings are needed “more than ever.”
“Cats have been shown to help with stress and anxiety—even more than dogs—and obviously we’re seeing more and more people working at home, spending more time at home,” says Jimmy Wu, CEO and co-founder of Cat Person. “Those that already have cats are spending more time with cats and they’ll need ways to keep them healthy and continue to bond with them.”
Fueled by an investment of an undisclosed amount from razor brand Harry’s, the New York-based brand’s website will feature a selection of wet and dry food, bowls, beds and houses available for delivery. Customers can opt into a subscription meal plan as well. Wu and his co-founder Lambert Wang, a former Harry’s employee, started Cat Person because they saw a void in the pet marketplace, which is primarily focused on dogs.
“Cat persons have largely been ignored, overlooked and made to feel like second-class citizens,” says Wu, noting that most large pet stores feel like giant dog houses rather than retailers of both dog and cat products. He adds that the brand should do well at this time of quarantine especially, when consumers are housebound and on the internet for socialization. “You think about the dog world—dog persons have dog parks where people congregate and talk about dogs, socialize. The internet is the cat equivalent of the dog park,” says Wu.
Cat Person had planned an out-of-home New York campaign to announce its debut, but had not purchased any media before the coronavirus pushed consumers indoors, Wu and Wang say, noting such plans are on pause. In the meantime, the brand is running paid social ads that were created in-house.