Crockd, how an Aussie side hustle accelerated into a global brand
With a mission to create a world of limitless potential through fearless creativity, Crockd provides ‘at-home’ pottery experiences. Airwallex has enabled Crockd to scale from zero to 7 figures within six months. They currently operate across Australia, New Zealand and the US.
Crockd helps friends get their hands dirty and minds clear
In late 2019, Andrew Ford and Rosa-Clare Willis were working in technology start-ups based out of Gold Coast, Australia. They felt burnt out and wanted a way to disconnect from technology.
As an alternative to consuming alcohol with friends, the duo invited their friends along to get their hands on clay and just muck around. They wanted to experience all the benefits of the creative process without the intimidation of a formal workshop.
Laughter ensued as they tried hand-building clay for the first time. The collective experience was something special, memorable and unifying. Hands got dirty. Deep conversation ensued.
And so, Crockd was born.
The founders saw a unique opportunity in the market as people shift towards ‘at-home’ experiences. “Less people are going to the movies, more are using Netflix. Less people are going to restaurants, and more people are ordering Uber Eats. People want to enjoy these comforts from their home.”
Thinking global from day one
From day one, Crockd built their business with scale in mind. As they set up their shipping, teams and banking systems, they needed to operate as if they had 1,000 customers a month globally.
“We wanted to be the most sophisticated craft business in the world. What were the technologies that could enable a product-focused business with a purpose to scale?”
From the start, Crockd picked a fulfilment partner that could provide both domestic and global shipping. Crockd also needed to bring home foreign currency revenue, pay their US-based suppliers and remote teams without the expensive foreign transaction costs or overhead from managing multiple bank accounts.
“Even though you are domestically Australian, you are in a global marketplace now. It just doesn’t work anymore to only have an Australian bank account.”
Even before having a domestic bank account, they signed up with Airwallex as their global business account. Within 24 hours, they had Australian and US accounts, with multi-currency virtual cards to manage their SaaS spend. Crockd could transact in all the major currencies in one place - saving at least $1,200 each month from foreign exchange fees. All of which is reinvested back into the business and improving the customer experience.
This scalable eCommerce tech stack allowed them to launch in the USA within 3 weeks of planning their expansion.
“Airwallex has allowed us to get things done at ten times the speed it used to happen. It means we could spend more time on our brand, our website and the customer experience. That’s what helped us to grow so much in a short span of time. These solutions just didn’t exist a few years ago.”
Building a scalable brand experience and frictionless systems
“We didn’t want there to be friction for someone to be creative, and that’s intertwined in our system and our brand.”
For Crockd’s brand, this means that they have intentionally crafted a style that is androgynous to remove any stigma for who their target customer should look like. Anyone, no matter their skill level or background, could connect with the Crockd product and see themselves experiencing it.
“Airwallex has made managing our money frictionless so that we can spend less time on the back-end that doesn’t add any value to our customer. Instead, really focus on delivering a better customer experience on a global scale.”
Crockd has automated their multi-currency reconciliation, payroll and recurring supplier payments with Airwallex - saving hours each week. While still retaining visibility with proactive payment notifications and resolution steps.
Like any product-based business who lives or dies by their cash flow, Crockd needed a real-time pulse on their global cash flow. Having their shipping, banking and payroll systems integrate into Xero has given the team the visibility and trust they need to make fast, data-driven decisions.
Airwallex’s proactive transaction notifications also allow Crockd to resolve issues 30% faster than their previous experiences with traditional providers.
What’s ahead for Crockd
“With growth, we can either focus on the same market and create new products. Or take the same product to new markets - which our systems have made it easy for us to do.”
The most important challenge for the founders now while they expand is how they maintain the Crockd brand ethos. “We’re a business focused on creating conversations, and pottery is just one of the catalysts for it.”
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