Danielle Robinson, the founder and Director of New Edition NZ, is passionate about sharing our story as a New Zealand made brand while helping caregivers feel connected and supported.
Family-oriented Dani was born and raised in Auckland with her twin sister. With a degree in marketing and sustainable development, it’s pretty natural that she previously spent seven years developing sustainable products from recycled materials.
We recently chatted with Dani about starting New Edition NZ, the process of creating the only 100% NZ Made Breast Pump, and why supporting local businesses is important to her.
A bit of background on this: I also work for my family business, Autex, as the Group Marketing Manager.
A big part of being sustainable is being New Zealand Made, and sourcing our manufacturing and packaging from home. As Autex has been a New Zealand owned and operating company for 53 years, employing local and empowering our community to help build the business has been super inspiring to me too.
I found there was a lack of transparency, especially in the breastfeeding space, around where products were being manufactured. At the time, there was no New Zealand made breast pumps, and after working in the industry for a couple of years already, I saw an opportunity to change that.
Why was it so important for you that the whole range is made in NZ, not just designed here?
Because we have the talent and ability to do so, that’s it. Supporting New Zealand made is now more important than ever with the COVID-19 pandemic, and I am proud of what we have achieved.
Well firstly being made in New Zealand. But secondly, there was a huge opportunity to improve some pain points I had come across while working in the industry. Small, unique touches such as a wide base to stop it tipping over, a straighter flange to prevent nipple tension, and a frosted appearance to help mothers relax, were all features that would make us stand out.
Creating a pump that was suitable for different size breasts was also important, and the softness of our silicone and the carefully thought out angles definitely achieved this.
It was super fun! We worked with an incredibly talented pair of product designers that traditionally had designed products such as furniture, architectural elements, hinges and the like. They loved working on the pump and their experience in interior and architectural design definitely influenced the beautiful silhouette of the finished design.
Partnering with a company in Hamilton to produce Pumpd meant that final tweaks, quality checks and assessments could be made with ease and speed which actually saves you time and money in the long run.
Just learning how startups work has been super interesting and challenging at the same time. I come from a corporate structured company with over 100 employees, so starting from scratch has been very eye-opening. The biggest lesson is making sure you have a team who can do what they are employed to do, but who are also able to jump in and put of different ‘hats’ when the team needs them too. There is a lot of collaboration and teamwork which I love!
It's so hard to judge long term but I think in the coming months, not only are people going to be heavily reliant on online ordering and delivery services, their disposable income will be affected, making their decision-making process when purchasing slow down... There will be more questions for companies like, where are you made? How? Why do you do what you do? As consumers become more conscious about where they spend their money.
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