Scaling From Crowdfunding Success To A $3M/Year Zero Waste Brand

Published: March 29th, 2022
Isabel Aagaard
Founder, LastObject
from Copenhagen, Capital Region of Denmark, Denmark
started April 2019
Discover what tools Isabel recommends to grow your business!
Discover what books Isabel recommends to grow your business!

Hello again! Remind us who you are and what business you started.

I am Isabel, co-founder and designer of LastObject. We have created a company that is dedicated to creating reusable alternatives to single-use items. Our flagship product is our first product LastSwab - a reusable cotton swab.

Our customers are quite widespread, they are based in urban/suburban areas in the ages between 25-45. They care about the environment and believe in making a difference with their own habits.

We have now eliminated the need for 2.3 billion single-use items across, cotton swabs, cotton rounds and tissues. We have signed with our first outside investors so we can rocket fire this ship.

If we have to really make a difference we need to build a brand that people know and will search for.

Tell us about what you’ve been up to! Has the business been growing?

From the last time we spoke, which was a year ago, we have amped up the team quite a bit. We are now 9 in the core team of superstars in their fields and around 40 employees half or full time around the world. We have had a revenue of $240K per month and launched 2 products more. And none of us have had any more children, so that front is calmed down. Thankfully.


We are working on understanding and exploring Tiktok again, but nothing we have really cracked. We see that user-generated content is working really well because it takes the use and validation to a whole different level. So we are starting to promote and share a lot of this kind of content.

Launching our last product LastPad - a reusable menstrual pad has really gotten us into some great articles such as TechCrunch and Fast Company. Periods are really a hot topic right now, and understandable it's a very bloody business on many levels.



What have been your biggest lessons learned in the last year?

Going from a startup to becoming a scaleup has been very challenging. We have had to get people on board that can run with us now and in the scale, and this is not an easy thing.

We have hired people that are good also when we are 10 times bigger than now. And our process and ways of working have had to be aligned and sharpened. Sometimes created, because we have worked as a very day-to-day, putting-out-fires kind of company. And now things have to be structured for us to have success on a big scale.

The best decisions we have taken this year have been the people we have had come on board! I am so excited about our team of superstars. The run is as fun as the people you run with.

We have had to also start focusing our company to develop in one category at a time. That means our product development plan has been edited to match our customers alongside with the impact that they bring. So we are not running in too many directions.

What’s in the plans for the upcoming year, and the next 5 years?

Retail is a huge focus for us in the coming year and the next five years will be very much about expanding our product line while we are building a world-class brand. If we have to really make a difference we need to build a brand that people know and will search for in the quest to improve their sustainable lifestyle. We need to be at the point where you are standing in the supermarket reaching out for a single-use item and stop with the thought β€œwhat did LastObejct make to replace this wasteful habit”


Have you read any good books in the last year?

Yes, Cradle to Cradle by William McDonough and Michael Braungart. The entire book focuses on how we can rethink the way we make things. Anyone who is running product companies (or any company) and simply wants to learn more about how our materials impact the world, they should definitely give this a read.

Advice for other entrepreneurs who might be struggling to grow their business?

Every company is different. There is no one-fits-all, but typically a company is born into a dream, hope, or set of values. For us, it has been an amazing journey and strengthened our business to dig into what we stand for. Making it sharp and to the point. It has made it easy to understand outward and inward. Sharpening the pencil of this has made our marketing, way of working and product development much clearer. I would recommend any business owner to do this.

We have the last couple of months struggled in different areas and I love how we have been able to shift focus to the areas that needed improvement. The entire product development team has dived fully into e-commerce in just few days. This ability to shift is a huge force and gives us an opportunity to make developments and changes as a team.

Are you looking to hire for certain positions right now?

We are always looking for amazing people that can add something to our team. Especially independent amazing talents in their fields.

Where can we go to learn more?

If you have any questions or comments, drop a comment below!