Burgeoning Startup Mr. Stitches is Disrupting a Traditional Niche in the Garment Decoration Industry

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Emerging as the only company online that offers "no minimum" order quantities for custom embroidered apparel and accessories

Mr. Stitches team & founders | Online custom embroidery startup

The Mr. Stitches team (from left) Francis Fitzgerald, Saad Malick and Anas Uddin

Custom apparel centered start-up Mr. Stitches is a fast-growing e-commerce based out of one of Canada's top startup hubs, the city of Montreal. Made up of former industry professionals who decided to go it alone with their own venture, Mr. Stitches has a simple but noble MO: To fix the issues they have personally seen develop within an industry they have worked in for many years.

Modernizing a traditional industry

The commercial embroidery market is a competitive environment with few market leaders. In the US alone the estimated revenue was $733M with an annual growth of 1.6% since 2009 according to Ibis. The continued and accelerated growth of the online space has lowered the barrier of entry for start-up companies and has resulted in a flooded market for apparel customization, mainly focused on print-on demand services. As online print on-demand platforms continue to emerge, competition is expected to grow.

With so much intense rivalry and contest for the custom apparel space's revenue, we asked one of the founders to shed some light on the question - how does a start-up like Mr. Stitches set itself apart from the rest of the market?

“We are the only custom embroidery website that is truly offering a no-minimums service.” said Francis Fitzgerald, Vice-President of Marketing & Operations for Mr. Stitches. “I’ve worked in this industry for many years, and I’ve seen a lot of companies that claim no minimum order sizes, but then hit you with hefty set-up fees and loop holes.” He continued: “At Mr. Stitches, when we say no minimums, we mean absolutely no minimums on any orders. I believe this is truly what sets us apart from the rest of the market. That and the fact the we are laser focused on custom embroidery, which we feel is a higher quality option in garment personalization than print.”

Real-world branding via e-commerce

This differentiating factor is combined with a streamlined e-commerce model that differs greatly from the traditional brick and mortar custom embroidery service. The benefits of a branded workforce and promotional products is obvious to most business owners. Before the emergence of online custom apparel services, if a garment needed to be branded with a logo or brand message, it was a long and often complicated process. The consumer would have to procure garments, bring them to an embroidery house or print shop, along with design papers and detailed instructions. Taking the customization process online, Mr. Stitches has simplified the traditional course of action and even allows the consumer to see an example of the product before deciding to purchase. Companies like Custom Ink and Cafepress have done a great job of this in the printed apparel market.

Focus on SMB and Start-ups

CEO of Mr. Stitches, Saad Malick, is clear on his focus for the company: “We really want to provide a viable option for the smaller businesses out there.” He went on to explain that according to his research, SMBs generally require between 1 and 20 pieces of branded apparel per order. Further adding that it is “key” that Mr. Stitches are able to successfully communicate an “honest and transparent no minimum order policy” to the market. He continued by saying “Most of the current custom embroidery providers are targeting big businesses with big budgets. We are creating an easy-to-use branding solution for the smaller companies and start-ups out there, which is something we feel has been sorely lacking for a while.”

Mr. Stitches is a start-up custom apparel company with operations based in Canada. The company currently ships custom embroidered apparel throughout North America and the UK.

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Francis Fitzgerald
Mr. Stitches
+1 (888) 663-9345
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@Mister_Stitches
since: 11/2012
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