Matteo Franceschetti, CEO of Eight Sleep, would prefer that you don’t call his startup a mattress company.
Eight Sleep does sell mattresses, albeit smart ones packed with sensors and temperature regulation controls. The company has raised north of $70 million from backers including Founders Fund and Khosla Ventures. A great deal of this funding surrounds the idea that there is more untapped potential in the sleep economy than existing players in the space have been able to imagine.
While Franceschetti says he intends for his company to remain private for the “foreseeable future,” Eight Sleep is in a less-than-comfortable spot following Casper’s botched IPO last week. Though Casper’s stock popped on its first day of trading, the process of pricing its shares ended up leaving its private investors a bit less than ecstatic. Casper debuted trading at a value of $575 million, a far cry from the $1.1 billion private market valuation it had previously achieved.
Franceschetti has been aiming to transform Eight Sleep into a company more focused on a robust tech platform than your average bed-in-a-box company. The startup’s initial effort, a smart sleep cover for your existing mattress, evolved into a mattress with a layer of sensors that then transformed into a sensor-laden mattress with a heating and cooling unit, called “The Pod.” The company’s product development has aimed to build out a more end-to-end platform for sleep, something Franceschetti says has made him reticent to compare his company to other direct-to-consumer mattress companies.