better Launch Story
In 2010 I founded kartenmacherei.de - based on the idea of my wife, Jennie - and since then we have bootstrapped it from scratch to become the European market leader for personalized cards with 40 million EUR annual turnover in 2018. Fun fact: I always call the 6th December 2010 (exactly 8 years ago) the big day, as it was the day we started advertising on Google. Since then we have built a profitable business with a team of more than 170 people. When we started with kartenmacherei in 2010 we didn’t invent personalized cards, edited online. However, we did see that there was much room for improvement. We wanted to do it in a better way - better in the eyes of our customers, partners and our team. During the last 8 years we have directly influenced the life of millions of people who have sent or received a card from kartenmacherei. Through our cards people connect with their loved ones in the most important moments of their lives.
Seeing kartenmacherei succeed made us think of translating our mission to other industries, i.e. to change more industries for the better. It took some time until our idea evolved to a solid vision and this year we decided to make it happen. To free up our time, we stepped back as the kartenmacherei management board and installed our successors. Jenny Y., Michael and Sebastian took over the lead in kartenmacherei during the last months and we are proud to see them already filling the gap together with the amazing team at kartenmacherei. We have fulltrust that they will build an even better kartenmacherei during the next years.
As a result, we (Jennie, Steffen, Patrick and I) are happy to launch our new parent brand “better” today. At better - besides remaining sparring partners for the kartenmacherei team - we will focus on building new ventures around our core business. We will help these new ventures to grow their business by adding our experience, customer relations and resources. In the beginning the new ventures will focus mainly on our existing target groups (e.g. mothers and wedding couples) as well as use our existing capabilities. We aim to learn a lot and plan to invest up to 100 million euros during the next 5 to 10 years.
Our mission remains the same as for kartenmacherei but became more universal: “We enhance the quality of people’s lives with simple, honest and beautiful experiences.” The inherited values - simple, honest and beautiful - have always been at the core of kartenmacherei and will remain the same at “better”. At better we not only aim to improve the lives of our customers but ultimately want to improve the whole industry from a customer, partner and employee perspective. Thus our vision goes as follows: “By 2028 we have built a network of ventures that changed their industries for the better.”
It took us quite some time to decide on the right name for our new parent brand. We chose "better" because it not only transports our mission and vision in just one word. Much better: We see it as a motivator for continuous improvement. We want to build better products and experiences for our customers. Everyone of us wants to become better every day: to grow personally, as a team and as a company. We hope you are as enthusiastic as we are about our journey. We would be very happy to see you accompanying us through the next phase, to a better beyond.
We are really excited about:
Learning a lot more about our customers pains & gains and solving them with great products & experiences
Applying new technologies like AI and blockchain to solve real customer problems
Scaling innovation techniques and finding our own venture building process
Onboarding many of new team members that we can learn from
What could be better? Stay tuned and follow us to find out soon.