Imagine you’ve come down with a cold while you’re away on a trip. You don’t necessarily want to buy a box of Kleenex, a full pack of Sudafed (or whatever decongestant you’re into) knowing that you have all these supplies at home, but just not currently with you. Wouldn’t it be great if someone could just bring you a sample size of tissue, a couple of Sudafeds and some throat lozenges? That’s where Jetpack, which recently launched on campus at Stanford, comes in.
“It’s not that they completely ran out of these things, but they’re in a situation where they just need a sample size,” Jetpack founder and CEO Fatima Dicko, a graduate student at Stanford University, told TechCrunch.
Jetpack delivers “emergency” supplies to students on demand. Initially, 15 items are available for on-demand delivery, and each item costs anywhere from one to five dollars. Currently, there are 100 students on campus equipped with Jetpack bags, ready to supply people with anything from energy drinks to cold meds to hangover remedies.
Jetpack pre-stocks people with those items so that once they get the request, all they have to do is worry about is the delivery. Jetpackers receive a standard weekly fee for selling a certain percentage of the products. Down the road, the goal is to expand Jetpack into cities and sell themed kits, which will cost between five to $10.
“We wanted to first understand which products are getting some traction and then curate from that,” Dicko told TechCrunch.
To answer your question, yes, you can get all of these products via something like Postmates. But a key differentiator, Dicko says, is that Postmates doesn’t benefit from “economies of scale when it comes to speed of delivery.” But Jetpack does since it pre-stocks its delivery people and keeps them contained in very dense areas.
Jetpack is a pivot from Dicko’s first startup, MyBestBox, a subscription box startup. Through that company, Dicko formed partnerships with consumer packaged goods companies, and has since funneled 25 of those into Jetpack’s operations. Dicko previously received $130,000 in funding, and is looking to raise a seed round.
Jetpack’s priorities in the next year entail launching at Cornell and Harvard. Dicko says her goal is to also better “understanding the interactions between people and understanding how helping other people can solve different psychological gaps people have,” she said. “If someone needs to freshen up with deodorant, it’s not only about that but the psychological gap about comfort.”