Strikingly similar to U.S. startup Manpacks, Turkey’s Erkek Paketi offers a subscription e-commerce service that delivers mens underwear, socks, t-shirts, shaving products and condoms on a monthly, two monthly or three monthly schedule. Like its North American inspiration, it’s tapping into the preconception that men don’t enjoy shopping — at least not for dull purchases that need to be made on a semi-regular basis.
Founded by Turkish serial entrepreneur, Ersin Mete Erturk, with funding from Turkey’s EME Technology Foreign Trade Co., the site offers six preconfigured subscription packages, fulfilled by well-known brands: The ‘Macho Pack’ includes three t-shirts, three boxers and three pairs of socks, for example. Or at the cheaper end is the ‘Socks’ package, which unsurprisingly includes three pairs of socks. Alternatively, users can create custom packs and specify the colours and the styles that they prefer. The frequency of delivery can be configured from one month to three months, and subscribers are free to cancel and change the frequency at any time. If you are a user of Amazon’s own subscription option, you already know the concept well.
Interestingly, however, Erturk is finding that even with a convenient subscription service for underwear, socks, shaving products etc., men are still too lazy to regularly shop for such items. Instead, off-line, it’s wives, partners and mums who often hold the purchasing power and so he’s started marketing Erkek Paketi to them also.
“When guys buy these basics, they hang on to them forever and it’s usually our mothers, wives and girlfriends who replenish them. Because of this our customers are not just men but also women. So we have started to market to women’s groups, hit up editors at women’s magazines and reach out to female bloggers who write about fashion, lifestyle and parenting” says Erturk in a statement.
Currently Erkek Paketi ships within Turkey only, but plans to expand to the Middle East in the near future. It also sounds like the company is currently fundraising. To that end, Erturk tells me that Erkek Paketi is “arousing plenty of interest from investors”, which possibly isn’t the best choice of words.