Not getting enough sleep makes people not only moody and feel stressed but causes also many lives due to accidents caused by a lack of sleep. Furthermore, little (not relaxing) sleep is related to many of our socially illnesses like burnout. These problems could be solved by an innovative drink from an US-company called “Som Sleep”. We interviewed co-founder Rob Bent about his new drink and the developments in the global beverage market.
What is the actual situation at your company?
We launched Som Sleep in January of this year. We surpassed all initial expectations by selling out on Amazon within weeks of launch thanks to great exposure stemming from the early positive response from professional athletes. Since then, we have expanded into almost 1,000 retailers nationwide and we’re adding new outlets almost every day.
Your drink is vegan. Was this by purpose or was this „by mistake“?
We specifically created Som Sleep to be vegan to ensure that it’s a perfect fit for the vast majority of consumers suffering from short sleep. That is why Som Sleep is also drug-free, Non-GMO Project Verified, non habit-forming, gluten-free, soy-free, and free of artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives. We want to make it easy for consumers to say “Yes!” to better sleep and gain the incredible range of benefits it provides.
What was your biggest surprise and struggle when starting with this idea?
Though our interest in improving sleep originated with our personal experiences with sleep deprivation, we were surprised to find out just how widespread and harmful the problem is. To name just a few examples, drowsy driving in the US alone takes an estimated 5,000 lives per year and, according to a 2017 study from the RAND Corporation, short sleep costs the US economy over $400 billion and almost 10 million hours of worker productivity per year. The same study estimates the costs to the German economy at $60 billion and over 1.6 million work-hours per year!
Why does our society need „Som Sleep“?
Insufficient sleep is simply a global public health epidemic. Chronic short sleep can contribute to depression, obesity, decreased immune function, cognitive impairment, and even some cancers. Our primary goal is to democratize great sleep and combat this global health threat head-on.
Which distribution channels do you use?
Som Sleep is currently available on our website (getsom.com), Amazon, and select retailers within the United States. We continue to expand with like-minded retail partners in order to bring a better night’s sleep to as many people as possible.
Which target group are you focussing on?
The need for better sleep transcends almost every consumer segment, touching the lives of women and men 18-85+ and coming from all walks of life. We want to bring the benefits of great sleep to everyone. However, we’re currently focused on reaching consumers who choose high-intensity and often high-stress lifestyles, whether in their professional pursuits or in their activities outside of work, like maintaining optimal fitness or providing the absolute best care for their children or aging parents. When you aim to go 100% every day, the physical and mental recovery offered by great sleep is key to achieving those big goals.
How would you assess the development of the overall beverage market worldwide?
Overall, the speed of innovation in the beverage market is increasing. Digitally-native, direct-to-consumer business models have provided improved access to consumers and have lowered the barriers for new companies to bring their products to market. Additionally, growth in competition has brought about growth in consumer expectations. Consumers expect more value and efficacy from their food, beverage, and supplements now than ever before.
You’re sold in the USA at the moment. Do you have any expansion plans for the next 12 to 36 months
Right now, we are laser-focused on domestic expansion. We do hope to expand internationally in the future.