Hikers, campers, and those who love fishing are now able to easily go to the bathroom in the great outdoors with a product that is both a camping chair and portable toilet. Raleigh-based Nature’s Throne is currently taking part in the summer 2023 cohort of NC State’s Andrews Launch Accelerator. [We previously profiled two other startups in the same cohort—TutorSmith and LetsGoRaleigh].
The program provided an $8,000 grant to Nature’s Throne, so the startup can work on obtaining a patent on the product and focus on R&D to see how it can be manufactured at a larger scale. Marko Sun, the startup’s CEO and Founder, is an avid outdoorsman who is studying business administration as a rising junior at NC State.
The accelerator has “speakers come in that have started different businesses (to) talk about customer discovery, product development, different types of legal struggles,” he said.
Sun designed the toilet-chair mainly for campers, but it can also be useful for those on long road trips with young kids.
“We are creating a solution for campers and other outdoor enthusiasts to be able to go to the bathroom conveniently without having to take long walks to dirty camp bathrooms or using bulky portable toilets,” he said.
The “throne” is similar to a regular camping chair, but comes with a detachable toilet seat that you can choose to leave at home if you are somewhere with a restroom nearby.
If you are outdoors for an extended period of time and do not have access to a bathroom, you are able to reattach the toilet seat. There is a disposable bag at the bottom beneath the chair that hangs from hooks, enabling someone to go to the bathroom without having to dig a hole in the ground.
Sun plans to create a privacy screen in the future to go along with the toilet-chair. He has interviewed several potential customers to figure out common camping issues, with one being children struggling to go to the bathroom outdoors due to a lack of toilets.
Sun is selling the portable product at a discounted rate of $50 to people willing to be beta testers. After beta testing, the product will cost around $100. The plan is to sell the product primarily through ecommerce at the Nature’s Throne site, but Sun is also aiming to get outdoor retailers like Dick’s Sporting Goods to carry the Nature’s Throne.
Sun is currently bootstrapping the company and is hoping by the end of the summer to have investors that are interested in his product. His website will also be up and running in the near future, so hikers and campers will be able to buy the product online.