Founded: October 2010
Rendi’s roots are in planted firmly in southern Colorado, but Mark and Annie Danielson’s ambitions involve online customers everywhere
Twenty years ago, creating jobs in Trinidad, Colorado, drove Mark and Annie Danielson’s business ambition.
“Now we are a growing online customization retailer,” says Mark Danielson, chief executive officer of Rendi, which was born out of their home décor company Danielson Designs.
“We are a story-telling company,” says his wife, Annie Danielson, president of Rendi. “We are all about helping busy women, moms in particular, capture, celebrate and archive their life story and the life of their growing family in some very easy steps, and have a beautiful product to preserve that story.”
The focus is on customization and being in Colorado. That is customization of memories, photographs and sentiments captured on personalized picture frames and decorative signs. “The future is to be found in customization,” says Mark. “Our mission and heart beat was to do this all from Trinidad, which is a great place to live, work, create jobs and find great employees.”
Think of it as scrapbooking meets the digital age, and it still ends up being showcased on coffee tables and on walls. “I was tired of suffering from scrapbook guilt,” says Annie.
“Let’s face it; women live on their smart phones,” says Annie. “So now Rendi offers several ways to encourage people to share and tell their stories,” says Annie. “Tag it. Tell it on a Story Board or Story Wall and treasure it.”
“We have thousands of pictures that usually stay on our phones,” says Annie. “We have created an app to create an honest-to-goodness, physical, photo archive-quality tag.”
The Tag It app is available for both Android and iPhones, and enables the user to create a photo tag with a few quick taps, and you can tell the story on the back of the tag. The tags are then displayed on the custom made Story Boards, and are interchangeable. Lastly, the tags are stored and filed in an archival, linen storage chest, making chronological filing simple and neat.
Rendi’s products are made from 100% reclaimed wood. The frames and signs are created with water-based finishes that are safe enough to eat from yet strong enough to resist fading and cracking. The custom décor is created in Trinidad from their 32,100 square foot warehouse. Orders are shipped within 24 hours.
“Every creation also helps other moms and kids around the world,” says Annie. Rendi is committed to the mission of drilling fresh water wells in Africa.
Their efforts have also received professional accolades. Annie was recognized by Enterprising Women Magazine as one of their Entrepreneurs of the Year in 2009. Also in 2009, she and Mark were recognized by ColoradoBiz Magazine as "Co-CEOs of the Year.” Annie was recognized with a "Stevie" from the American Business Awards for "Best Corporate Social Responsibility Program.”
“We make it super easy for women who don’t think they aren’t creative or don’t have much time,” says Annie. “This takes ten minutes to set up and literally makes them look like rock stars. We take a lot of pride in that the products we produce are lasting spots of joy, and become a legacy.”
Challenges: “We are really comfortable with our strategy and the market response that Rendi has received,” says Mark. “But the current economic climate can put a damper on things and that can be a challenge at times.”
Opportunities: “There are so many opportunities,” says Annie. “There are 64 million moms with families and kids, and they want to preserve some moments and events for a lifetime.”
Needs: “Some things are out of our control,” says Mark. “Health Care is the third largest line-item cost on profit and loss.” The hope for Rendi is to see that cost decrease.