Harry's isn't the only new company looking to disrupt the men's shaving market. Dollar Shave Club is a Venice, California-based subscription service that delivers razors starting at $1 a month. It's using rock-bottom prices (and funny ads starring its co-founder, Michael Dubin) to convince men they don't have to spend a fortune to get a good shave.
Still, Katz-Mayfield and Raider are convinced that a quality shave at a fair price will win the game. "We stand by our blades and feel they are highly differentiated from our competitors," Raider said. "We offer both great value and great quality. As a company, we're thinking less about market share and more about the impact we can have on people by giving them a better choice when it comes to shaving."
The Harry's co-founders have known each other since their college days when they were both interns at Bain & Co. After graduation, they worked full-time for the consulting firm and then went on to join private equity firm Charlesbank Capital Partners, where they worked for four years.
After earning MBAs—Raider went to Wharton and Katz-Mayfield to Stanford—the pair linked back up to start Harry's. In trying to come up with a name for the company, they wanted something solid and down to earth. "Jeff had someone in life who was like a grandfather to him, and his name was Harry," Katz-Mayfield explained. "When he said the name out loud, we both liked it."
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Both men said there will be no celebrity endorsers or other high-profile figures as part of Harry's marketing plan. Rather, they want credible sources—such as grooming editors at major magazines and satisfied customers—to spread the word. Said Raider: "If we can take people one by one and give them an incredible shaving experience, then over time we think we can capture a really big audience."