The cost of small scale manufacturing has historically been a major barrier to entry for many aspiring entrepreneurs. Throughout my career, I have worked with entrepreneurs, serving on entrepreneurial boards and actively working to foster this community. It's a passion area for me which is why I'm so proud M4 has been able to take on younger companies, as bandwidth allows, to provide the resources they need to get their product off the ground and enter the physical product space.
If M4 is going to take on a smaller client, it needs to be a promising new company with a product we can get behind, and that’s exactly how we came to meet Lasso. The founder of Lasso, Colleen Chinlund was working as a lawyer when she thought up a solution to a daily problem of necklaces getting tangled in storage. She had a product in mind, but needed a partner to bring it to life. She brought M4 a functioning 3D model, and we led the charge from there, developing a new 3D printed prototype, getting a tool made overseas, sourcing materials, identifying color variations, designing cap closures and helping with packaging. We made sure Lasso could trust and lean on us throughout the entire process.
When entrepreneurs approach us they are typically less familiar with the manufacturing process so there is a learning curve there and more hands-on time before they’re up to speed. But with all of our clients, we take a holistic viewpoint of manufacturing. We actively support our clients across each phase of the process, from product development and material selection, all the way to tool drawing and tool building, and full-scale manufacturing. Being involved at this level is exciting, seeing concepts refined and perfected and, ultimately, becoming a tangible product you can hold.
Colleen is the vision behind Lasso. She had a shape in mind and collaborated with Blaire, a design engineer, before approaching M4. She did market research and focus group testing, evaluating consumer insights, design specifications and aesthetics to create a market-ready product. With her innovative design and extensive consumer and product research, she is exactly is the type of entrepreneur we love to work with. We were thrilled to be a part of her journey from concept to realization!
Check out www.shoplasso.com.