Please introduce yourself
I’m Henry Chandra, co-founder of Comfort Works. I look after the day-to-day operations, logistics and our customers’ overall happiness. Together with my co-founder / wife, Rachel and a small team, we work with a determination to refresh all the living rooms of the world, one sofa at a time.
What makes you cringe?
Badly modified bikes. Just thinking about it makes me cringe! And also bad biker etiquette. The sound of cutlery against plates, especially knives scraping.
What smell you love?
The smell of fresh espresso as I’m a major coffee addict.
The smell of a freshly unboxed gadgets. And basil leaves, torn up just before going into an Italian salad.
To what are you addicted to?
Aside from coffee, probably too many things that are bad for me. I’d say that I love my loud music a little too much, is that an addiction?
What was your last dream?
I was flying a kite on a beach somewhere and my kite was a goat that was trying to run away. To control the goat, I had to shift gears for some reason and I accidentally shifted into reverse and the goat/kite got loose, so I had to chase it.
What did you Google last?
Indonesian food, just so that I could look at it.
What the last thing you took photo of?
My 3 years old son in an astronaut photo booth.
When did you realize that Santa is not real?
I don’t really remember, but I kinda always knew that he wasn’t real somehow, I cared more bout pleasing my folks just so that the pressies I’m wishing for would show up near the christmas tree.
How did you get started in the lifestyle eCommerce world?
We started off many years ago in our tiny Melbourne home, making our own slipcover with a secondhand sewing machine and countless Youtube tutorials. It came about because we found out that custom making a slipcover for a sofa would have cost upwards of AU$800, when our little Ikea loveseat just cost AU$300 on its own. ECommerce wasn’t even the next step yet because we were still working our day jobs, making slipcovers on the side and selling them to our neighbours before finally setting up a web store.
What has been the toughest thing to get over when you were starting out?
My own expectations. I suppose after these few years I’ve had to constantly readjust my expectations of the market, myself, our products.
How has been your experience in your journey?
It’s been pretty crazy actually, both my wife and I were never the entrepreneur type, and we kinda just winged it as we went along in fact; I guess looking back, it’s quite an exciting journey to get to where we are today, having said that, it’s still quite a bit of distance to cover to get to where we want to go next.
What would you suggest that one thing, startup lifestyle and fashion brand must have?
Take care of your customers! I can’t begin to emphasis about how important word of mouth marketing is, especially in the early stages of our business with happy customers telling their friends about us, who in turn placed orders. Sometimes it can be very easy to get carried away with social media and making everything pretty but for me, customer happiness takes top priority.
Thank you Henry, for an amazing interview!
Best wishes for your future!