The true hard core geek/fanboy crowd loved ValleySchwag when it launched in the Spring of 2006. For $15 per month you would receive a package containing tshirts, stickers, pens and other junk that new startups pay a fortune to have created with their logo printed on it. Usually this stuff is handed out at parties and conferences, but ValleySchwag created a way for people to get it even if they didn’t, or couldn’t, attend the events.
Sadly, ValleySchwag faded away as the founders moved on to other projects. Now another service, Startup Schwag, is taking its place with a similar business model. For $15/month, plus shipping, you receive a monthly shipment containing a startup tshirt and possibly other stuff as well.
Startup Schwag was created by Roddy Richards, a web developer, and is based in Chicago. Richards says he’s going to tweak the way they fulfill demand substantially to allow it to scale up. ValleySchwag failed, he says, because too many subscribers wanted a limited supply of schwag, and it became a real burden on startups to get enough actual stuff to fulfill that demand.
Startup Schwag won’t be looking to startups to send them stuff to pass on to subscribers. Instead, Richards says they’ll be licensing logo rights from hot startups and creating the schwag themselves, at exactly the amount to fulfill demand.
That means tech geeks who think a Digg or Twitter tshirt is cooler than a Nike logo will have a way of getting exactly what they want. Startups will pay nothing for the stuff, although they will be expected to license their logo to Startup Schwag for free. Something tells me that PR hungry companies will be more than willing to do exactly that.
The first shipments will go out in early to mid October. Sign up now – Richards says that first shipment will contain a TechCrunch tshirt, to kick things off.