Care to Kammok? Dallas Start-Up Raises Cash To Help You (And Orphans) Relax.
Greg McEvilly says Kammoking is the new planking. We'll forgive him if you do.
Greg McEvilly and his co-workers typically hold their meetings tethered to branches, poles or anything they can find that will support their body weight. They do it because they don't have an office, but also because they hope you and your friends or family or coworkers will one day be doing the same. Their business depends on it.
McEvilly, a 27-year-old Dallas native, is the founder of the outdoor equipment company Kammok International, and the inventor behind the Kammok ROO, a lightweight portable hammock meant to be hung anywhere you feel like napping ... or brainstorming.
"We're pretty nomadic," he says of the Kammok team, based somewhere in the Dallas area, depending on the day. "We've had several meetings while we're kammoking ... several field trips while we're field testing gear." Then again, he says, they don't have the money for a stand-alone office. But when they do, "it will feel more like a kammok office than a corporate office," he says.
Made of durable, breathable, proprietary fabric, the one-pound hammock (Kammok? ROO?) fits into a bag the size of "an angry blow fish," as described by the brand's website.
"The material is so soft and lightweight it feels almost like you're sitting on air," McEvilly says. "You're like wow this is so lightweight, how is this holding me up?" It conforms to the shape of your body "almost like memory foam," with enough material that you don't end up like the contents of a taquito.
And you can really jigger this thing up in your cubicle? Hmm. (In recent days, hammock enthusiasts have spent quite a bit of time back-and-forthing over the merits of the Kammock, not to mention the price point.)
The company has raised a theoretical $67,000 on Kickstarter, after starting fund-raising with hopes of raising $15,000 by August. For now, the Kammok is only available as an $85 package deal with a Miir water bottle on Kickstarter, but it will eventually retail for $74.95. (Kammoking is a lot of things, but it's not a cheap, as those posters to the Hammock Forum have noted.)
In the foreseeable future, Kammok will release accessories such as a Kammok rain hood and mosquito net. The company insists 20 percent of Kammok's profits, once it turns a profit, will go to charity. McEvilly says he's currently establishing partnerships with non-profits that provide bedding for orphans in Third World countries and mosquito nets to prevent the spread of malaria.
Some of his prospective partner companies are now field testing Kammoks as a place for orphans to sleep. If the notion is too odd or complex to be useful to people unfamiliar with such gadgets, McEvilly will consider donating money or other goods in place of Kammoks. He's still working out the details.
"As a business we want to be the conduit for people to connect with people in need and serve one and other," McEvilly says. "We're trying to accomplish a lot. We're really committed to it."
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