ONE OF THE couples behind The Irish Fairy Door Company has been backed by the founders of Fulfil Nutrition as they launch a new venture.
Aoife and Gavin Lawler have stepped away from The Irish Fairy Door Company, which they co-founded with Niamh Sherwin Barry and Oisin Barry, and set up Innov8 Creative Academy – which is launching new children’s products.
Tom Gannon and Niall McGrath, founders of vitamin and protein bar company Fulfil Nutrition, have backed the company.
Aoife Lawler told Fora, as well as giving an undisclosed sum of money, Gannon and McGrath are acting as “sweat equity investors”. She explained they are dedicating four days a month to work within the company, helping with branding and marketing.
Both Gannon and Gavin Lawler are from Clondalkin and “knew each other from around the village”.
“When they both had successful brands behind them they reconnected through business and they kept in touch. It happened organically that they heard about our new project and they were interested in getting behind it,” Lawlor said.
The married couple stepped away from The Irish Fairy Door Company after six years, during which the Dublin company grew to have significant worldwide sales and signed a deal with Canadian media company DHX to create an animated series. They are still shareholders in the business.
“Gavin and I were bubbling with other ideas to bring to market for quite some time, so when the opportunity for us to go do our own thing came we took it,” Lawler said.
The first product the couple has launched is called Bye Bye Blankie – a baby’s blanket that can be reduced in size as a child grows.
Lawler said the idea for the blanket came when she realised how attached her youngest child was to his. As he grew she decreased the size of the blanket but found it hard to stitch it each time.
The product that she and her husband have produced has five individual seams that can be cut to reduce the blanket gradually, turning it from a blanket to a comforter and then to a keepsake.
Innov8 Creative Academy’s second product is The Rainbow Reward Squad, a reward system for children that aims to give them more independence.
The couple has agreed distribution deals in both Ireland and Britain with products available to buy in Arnotts, Smyths, Mothercare and some smaller stores.
Lawler said the business aims to raise a larger funding round towards the end of the year.