PARENT-TECH FOUNDER ON RAISING A BUSINESS
The overwhelming and often overlooked loneliness of being a new mum inspired Katie Massie-Taylor to launch Mush, a social networking app for mums to connect with others.
Speaking to Michael Hayman on the Capital Conversation, Katie says: “[Mush] came out of this problem that mums face when they have babies. It’s a totally new environment and they need friends nearby with kids the same age.”
She adds that once the attention around having a baby dies down, mothers often find themselves feeling incredibly lonely: “You’re the celebrity for the first couple of weeks, people visit you, and after that you’re thrown into this new world.
“Half of mums go to the supermarket just for an adult conversation!”
Katie had the idea for the app shortly after meeting soon-to-be co-founder Sarah Hesz who, like her, had just given birth to her second child. Realising they could help other mums to combat loneliness, the pair launched Mush in May 2016.
The company has since been listed by Apple and Google as one of the top apps for mums and named one of Europe’s top 100 start-ups by Wired.
Katie says that it was the app’s popular concept, supported by successful crowdfunding campaigns and an angel investor that meant the they could attract venture capital.
On attracting investment, Katie explains: “I think they are seeing innovation in a space that has been slightly neglected in the tech world. Parent-tech was actually a term that was coined when we launched!”
Katie praises the UK’s welcoming environment for start-ups, with particular improvements in recent years for female founders: “We are one of seven female-led businesses from our VC alone; we certainly feel like there is a huge network of female entrepreneurs.”
As for the future, Katie wants Mush to become the world’s most-trusted mum brand and has written a book, Mumsition, as additional resource:
“It’s the friendliest companion you can have to motherhood. There are a lot of medical books out there. This one’s funny, it’s designed to make you laugh as well as being practical and stage-led.”
You can watch the full episode here.