Every moment is worth celebrating.
It was true before the coronavirus pandemic and is still true in the midst of it—and it’s the tagline for Cary-based startup memoryCrafters.
The husband-and-wife duo behind memoryCrafters knows what it’s like to be lost in the organization of creating a memorable event. That’s why they launched their startup, a one-stop-shop marketplace to find everything you need for the perfect celebratory event.
Abhi and Poonam Narang, the Co-Founders of memoryCrafters who originally met at Wake Forest University during their MBA programs, created the startup by recognizing a problem that they faced themselves.
A month before their son’s first birthday, Poonam was trying to plan a birthday party while visiting family in India and quickly discovered how painful it was to sift through various vendors and options. The idea for memoryCrafters arose then, but was put on the back burner until their son’s fifth birthday.
“So that’s when we thought that okay, this party planning is really painful,” Poonam said. “There has to be a simpler way to organize this.”
The creation of memoryCrafters officially came in August of last year and was designed first for the many parents who want to create a special event for their child or any loved one, but don’t have significant time to invest into the party-planning process.
What memoryCrafters offers goes beyond just helping people plan parties for their loved ones. They are also helping businesses celebrate employees with birthdays and promotions, whether virtually or in-person.
“Our big vision is that when you think about any celebration, we want you to think about memoryCrafters,” Abhi said. “We want people to come to our platform and look for options. A lot of times you don’t have too many resources, too much money to celebrate, but you can still celebrate, which we didn’t know when we were students.”
While memoryCrafters is still in testing, they hope to launch their products in the first half of next year. They are still working on potential business models, but the platform will be free to those planning parties. The revenue will come from the vendors on the platform sharing a percentage of the business booked on memoryCrafters, as well as a possible freemium subscription model for vendors. There might also be a potential for ad revenue down the road.
“Our idea is to really make it easy for anybody to celebrate, whether it’s individual users or even big companies,” Abhi said. “We want people to celebrate milestones, celebrate life.”
When the pandemic came, memoryCrafters started looking at small businesses with virtual capacities to hold celebratory events, but otherwise held steadfast to their original vision. The startup has joined the current cohort of the Launch Chapel Hill accelerator and has welcomed several interns on their team.
Just pre-pandemic, memoryCrafters was looking to get office space at American Underground in Durham—it ended up not leasing anything—and made their pivot to attracting businesses with virtual abilities, like a Taekwondo studio offering virtual birthday parties or a company offering Zoom wine tastings. Abhi hopes things will go back to normal event-wise in a few months but, with the help of Launch Chapel Hill, the duo is committed to launching memoryCrafters and building on their business model for their fully bootstrapped startup.
“We were just getting to that point where we were about to gain space in American Underground, and this happened,” Abhi said. “So we did not have a lot of overhead. So that’s why we survived. And now what we have gone through in the last six months, I have even more conviction about creating memoryCrafters.”