How did you meet?Steph: we met on our very first day of work at Warby Parker. We were both 24 at the time and the company only consisted of about fifteen people. Jen had been hired as the company’s first Head of Social Media, and I eventually became Head of Supply Chain. We always worked on different parts of the business, and I think that’s why we became such close friends so quickly. We could always rely on each other to run out for a coffee to vent about whatever was going on in our respective work worlds.
What inspired you to start Away?Jen: A couple years ago, I was at the airport and had a piece of fairly expensive luggage fall apart while I was traveling. When I got home, I asked around for recommendations to replace it, and no one could suggest a better option. Everything was either well made, but way too expensive, or affordable and poor quality. It was crazy.
I called Steph to vent about it and we ended up talking for hours. At the time she was at Columbia getting her MBA, and we both had the idea that maybe the luggage industry was something that needed a shakeup, similarly to what Neil and Dave had done with the glasses industry at Warby Parker when we worked there. We started looking into it, and the rest is history.