Quokka Beds managing director Daniel Ibbitson and founder Brett Ibbitson.Credit score:Stefan Gosatti

Below Daniel’s route, the product providing was streamlined: a spread of 10 mattress bases was lowered to 2. The elder Ibbitson discovered a solution to pack all of the components into one field. Daniel started working creating an internet site, taking the bricks-and-mortar firm on-line for the primary time.

“[We got a] enormous response immediately,” Daniel says. “We couldn’t imagine what number of beds we had been making, so we needed to shortly rent extra folks.”

The model bought a makeover: Quokka Beds is much less wordy and far less complicated than Brett’s Beds + Futons. Additionally it is a small nod to its better-known mattress competitor, Koala. “We positively took inspiration as slightly cheeky play on them as nicely,” says Daniel.

The pandemic helped to speed up Quokka’s momentum. Folks had been spending way more time at house, with on-line gross sales for furnishings ballooning throughout that interval. Quokka Beds raked in practically $2.3 million in income for the 2022 monetary yr, in comparison with $380,000 in 2019.

They will again up their claims of being beloved by clients, too: Quokka Beds’ timber base has been the winner of ProductReview.com.au’s annual awards within the mattress class two years in a row.


In keeping with the Ibbitsons, Quokka’s largest level of distinction is that the beds are solely Australian-made. The place Koala obtained some backlash for its 2020 determination to maneuver its manufacturing to China, Quokka’s mattress bases are made with sustainable timber from licensed Australian plantations after which hand-built in Perth.

Brett observes that furnishings manufacturing has declined considerably within the final 20 years. “We are able to make it right here. Regardless that our prices are increased, we will nonetheless compete with these imported merchandise,” he says.

The daddy-son duo need to show they’ll function like a start-up, whereas rejecting ‘quick furnishings’ in a dedication to high quality. “There’s just about nothing on the market made in Australia from strong timber – that’s positively a giant hole available in the market we entered there,” Daniel says.

In the meantime, their mattresses are made out of natural Sri Lankan latex. “We have to discover the most effective product, and that’s the place it’s,” says Daniel. Solely 4 corporations on the planet provide natural latex, and three of these suppliers are in Sri Lanka. Its manufacturing is taken into account carbon unfavorable, Brett provides.

The pair remains to be making an attempt to maintain up with demand. The Ibbitsons have began an fairness crowdfunding initiative on the crowdfunding platform Birchal to maneuver right into a manufacturing unit twice the scale of their present facility and rent extra folks, although they acknowledge the labour market is especially tight.

In addition they plan to extend their advertising spend. Regardless of the youthful Ibbitson’s digital advertising prowess, they are saying most of their progress has been the old school method.

“The product form of bought itself,” Daniel says. Within the final three or 4 years, they’ve solely spent about 1 or 2 per cent of their income on advertising. “Phrase of mouth, kind of,” Brett provides.

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