When you move into a new apartment or house, where's your first stop for furniture and décor? For many, it's probably IKEA for inexpensive modern looks.
But with technology constantly evolving, the founders of ZOOM interiors decided it was time to revolutionize interior design for consumers.
"Once we did have something that was working and that people actually wanted to get involved with, we realized that we needed keep our prices low, which is very important to our company, and bringing affordability to our business so we could share it with the masses," Lizzie says.
Affordability and accessibility is what most people look for when making a purchase so that's the mission Lizzie, Beatrice and Madeline swear by three years into their virtual interior design start-up company in Philadelphia.
How does it work? ZOOM first connects you with the company's designers for an e-consultation that helps them create a virtual version of your of your new office, bedroom, or kitchen. What you receive is a digital rendering of the design and a shopping list of items for your updated space.
The three graduates from George Washington University in Washington D.C. realized they could really bring their ideas to life when they studied abroad in London while helping their friends shop and design their new apartments.
"The three of us met in our first interior design course our freshman year. When we came home from abroad, there was a business plan competition at GW and that really got us into gear. We signed company papers and a month later we were starting our company, and that was the beginning of the end," says Lizzie.
"Our last year in college consisted of part-time jobs, trying to graduate, and ZOOM interiors," Beatrice added.
Their vision is inspired not only by their education but their knack and drive for spotting trends and what's relevant right now, then translating that to interiors.
According to their 10-year plan, they're hoping to make quite an impact on the younger generation.
"Overall, I know we want to be the Martha Stewart of the millennial generation and be able to do all the aspects of style, so fashion, house and home and blogging," said Lizzie.
By years four and five, they plan to start their own furniture line, keeping it true to their mission of affordable and trendy.
What made them move here? With no connections to the city they took the short trip up the east coast from D.C. and found that there's a great start-up community with incredible support here.
"We found that Philly has such great support system around start-ups and it's less cutthroat than New York or L.A., so we said, 'Let's do it', the rent is affordable and we can have an office. We're so grateful to be here," Beatrice said.
Since moving to the area, they've been able to hire a couple of full-time employees and interns. One thing they've learned as a start-up and working alongside young professionals is the value of everyone's opinion, no matter their position.
"Something we've felt important with a start-up and being young is always listen and taking advice from people," Lizzie said.
Their focus right now in year three is shifting toward technology and working on an app that has earned them a long awaited spot on ABC's Shark Tank Friday at 8|7 c.
"We're really excited to have this opportunity with eight million viewers and we're just ready to scale up finally in the volume we're expecting," Lizzie said.
Of the 30,000 applicants looking to land a spot on Shark Tank, ZOOM interiors made it down to the final 120.