Please welcome Block, a one-size solution for any size bathroom renovation
HQ: New York
Cofounders: Luke Sherwin and Koda Wang
The problem: A bathroom renovation is rarely as seamless as it appears on HGTV. Homeowners and renters spend time researching contractors, materials, and quotes only to sign onto a project that will likely last longer than the proposed timeline and exceed the original budget. For a process that typically costs $25,900 in New York, consumers are often left spent in more ways than one.
Block’s solution: Block was created to simplify the home renovation process. The startup offers homeowners and renters designs by professional interior designers, instant quotes on projects, and build timeframes as short as three weeks, all for about 25% less than they’d spend on a traditional contractor.
Origin story: Growing up in New York, Luke Sherwin (who cofounded Casper) witnessed his father renovate old walk-ups in Brooklyn and gained invaluable, firsthand knowledge of what consumers go through to upgrade their living spaces. Realizing this experience was broken, he teamed up with customer experience expert Koda Wang, formerly the Chief Customer Officer at Rent the Runway and Chief Operating Officer at Huffington Post. The pair launched Block in fall 2017 to offer consumers an alternative solution.
Why we’re betting on it: As early investors in Casper, we had the pleasure of seeing Luke’s unique mix of grit, timing, and insight in action. His background, combined with Koda’s deep operational and customer experience expertise, convinced us that this duo would deliver a streamlined solution to the overly complicated problem of bathroom renovation.
Our take: Home renovation is a $400 billion market, but it’s an experience most customers dread. With Block, homeowners and renters don’t have to struggle to navigate architects, contractors, designers and decorators, all of whom add to the opacity, time and cost of home projects. Starting with bathrooms, there’s a huge opportunity to optimize a better full-home improvement process. Block is uniquely positioned to tackle bathrooms now and, later, other living spaces. With Luke and Koda’s combined experience building consumer-centric, enjoyable experiences, anyone ready to tackle home improvement projects can expect an improved status quo.
Further reading: “The cofounder of Casper wants to make home renovations less hellish” via Fast Company