The idea for the company--which makes a dry cleaner hanger made entirely from recycled paper--came after founder and Chief Operating Officer J.D. Schulman's mother asked him to throw away a bunch of old wire hangers. He put them in the garbage, the hangers poked a hole in the bag, and gravy dripped on her white carpet when Schulman took the garbage out, says HangerNetwork CEO Bob Kantor.
The result was the EcoHanger, a sturdy replacement for wire hangers that can be folded and tossed into the ordinary household recycling bin. Because they biodegrade relatively quickly, the hanger conceivably could displace significant amounts of difficult-to-dispose-of garbage every year.
"3.5 billion wire hangers go into U.S. landfills every year, and they sit in there for over a hundred years," Kantor said.
Perhaps just as important, the company says it can bring these hangers to market in an economical way that makes it attractive for dry cleaners to switch. HangerNetwork doesn't sell its hangers. It gives them free to dry cleaners, who ordinarily have to pay about 8 cents per wire hanger.
So who foots the bill? National advertisers pay HangerNetwork to put ads on the hangers, which then stare consumers in the face when they get dressed in the morning.
"We have Van Heusen shirts, L'Oreal, Dunkin' Donuts, Mitchum antiperspirant," Kantor said. "On average, (the hanger) stays in your closet six to eight weeks."
The company is already pulling in "multimillions" in ad revenue, he said. Ad campaigns can be targeted at men or women and will be available nationwide or aimed at specific markets. The ad campaigns start at 250,000 hangers.
James: My only complaint is that I can't figure out how to order some for my personal use!! I want to replace all my hangers with these environmentally friendly ones.
~Peace to all beings~