About this project
The campaign is over, but our journey is just getting started. Be part of it:
First we did long-haul. Now we do life.
We started as two random guys from New Zealand who’d worn a bunch of bags, but never made one. That all changed in 2013 with the original Minaal Carry-on 1.0.
Since then, you’ve told us that you’re still having huge problems finding gear you can trust; gear that gives you what you need – then gets out of your way.
You (uh, quite forcefully) told us you wanted more, and this is the moment Minaal becomes more than just the bag you carry on. We want to redefine ‘travel’ in the same way the last 5 years redefined Seinfeld’s dress sense as ‘cool’. Travel is movement, and like you, we never stop moving – meaning we’re committed to building the best gear for life.
When you’re hopping between design meetings, co-working spaces, airports, and fine drinking establishments – does your laptop satchel always fit in? When you’re in a pitch meeting or a boardroom – does your messenger bag generate envious stares? When you want to rush out of the hotel and effortlessly explore a new city, country, or continent – does your wheeled luggage want to play?
If you’re tired of cheap bags falling apart when you do something totally outrageous like walk around and use them, you know that investing in high-quality tools is more cost-effective and better for your sanity over time. Do you worry about durability every time you pick up your bag?
Our plan is simple: from departure lounge to feet on the ground, we’re all-in on improving how you get from A to B – whether A and B are Saigon and Stockholm, or SoMa and the Sunset.
If you care about moving seamlessly from place to place, from indoor to out, from work to play – we’d be stoked to have you join the Minaal family.
We’re 100% focused on making better stuff. There are no shareholder meetings to distract us, no investors to please, no ulterior motives. Since we launched, the team has travelled hundreds of thousands of miles with Minaal gear – if we make a crappy product, we have to use it ourselves.
Every. Damn. Day.
You’ve been searching for a high-quality, feature-rich everyday backpack that doesn't make you look like an amateur.
You’ve been craving a bag that keeps your essentials organised and close at hand, while helping you stay professional and absolutely, undeniably attractive.
Or, you already own a Minaal Carry-on, and want a purpose-designed companion bag to make your travels even faster, happier and more productive.
The Minaal Daily has been designed to work as:
- Your ready-for-anything everyday backpack – whether you're coding from a cafe in Cambodia, haggling for a hotel in Holland, or doing deals in Dominica
- Your active briefcase alternative, when you need to up your game
- Your personal item on long-haul journeys, when your Carry-on is your main backpack
We’re on a mission to make movement more efficient, and help you reach your destination ASAP – wherever it may be. Here’s how we do it:
We build gear optimised for the life we actually live, day in and day out – tools that help us explore, create and move faster than everyone else.
During the design process, our #1 criteria for all decisions is: “Will this make the experience better?”
The Minaal Daily is for you if:
- You’re active, and enjoy looking 'at home' in any environment
- You’re building cool stuff (whether it’s a business, art, or a house) and need to securely carry your tools of the trade
- You care about maximising your time alive, and minimising wasted time (aka Travel Drag!)
- You invest in gear that helps you achieve more, faster
And it’s not for you if:
- You don't really care about your appearance
- You're content with what's given to you
- You DEFINITELY don’t care about quality components and fabric
- You believe money is more important than experiences
- You prefer large corporations to small, passionate crowdfunded businesses (*single tear*)
- Something something Australian (JOKES guys, luv u)
After this campaign, we’ll be launching regular pre-sales, but they’ll be at a higher price and will be second-in-line to receive bags.
Also, for each location we ship from, we’re going to prioritise order of packages by backer number, so if that gets you jazzed, jump in quick!
“Wait a minute – why can’t I use my Carry-on for daily life?!”
You totally can, and you’ll be in great company. But over the past two years, many of you have told us that you’d love a bag specifically built for daily use, rather than carrying on.
The Daily is that bag – custom-built to be your: 1) personal item on long-haul trips, and 2) your daily bag once you get to where you’re headed.
Oh, and of course it integrates perfectly with...
In September 2013, we launched the original Carry-on. It raised over $340,000 in 30 days (more than 11x our original goal). It was a Kickstarter Staff Pick. And at the time, it was the most-funded bag in Kickstarter history.
Better than that? It was shipped on-time. Here’s the original video:
WOWOW Doug looks young and fresh, doesn’t he?
We had an incredible group of backers doing incredible things, and as they travelled the world doing those things, they sent us feedback.
We’re building a company that makes gear for real life. Naturally, the development process for the Carry-on 2.0 looked something like this:
- 10,000+ emails
- 2+ years of testing
- Uncountable late-night Skype calls with dodgy connections
- 3,278,453,278 team ‘debates’
- 1 black eye (don't ask)
In summary: we listened, we questioned, we politely disagreed with each other, we thanked our users profusely.
And then, we made the Carry-on 2.0.
The Carry-on 2.0 is the result of incessant travel abuse, thoughtful design, and too many sleepless nights.
It’s been pulled apart and reviewed from the ground up – for an even faster, happier, and more productive travel experience.
Many of you have asked us why we haven't come back to Kickstarter for more than 2 years since our last campaign. There are two reasons: Scale and Listening.
Scale is the level of success we achieved with the first Kickstarter. Over $340,000 in 30 days was more than we'd ever dreamed of, and as two Kiwi dudes who'd never made a bag before, the learning curve was steep (a.k.a exciting as hell). What we expected to be a small niche brand was suddenly crafting bags in large doses to the savviest and most discerning crowd we'd ever met.
And when that crowd talked, we listened.
Firstly, we know how annoying it is to our users when promises are broken. That's why we put such heavy emphasis on meeting or beating our project deadline first time around.
Then, in the 2+ years since, we've been intensively chatting to you all – online, on the street, in departure lounges (hey Chris!) – anywhere we could pretend to be a random bystander asking you creepily intense questions about your bag (you didn't see Doug taking notes in the background?!). Listening is a slow process, and while we could've released any old product, rushed things and grown faster, our primary goal is making your life more rich by making better tools for you to use – every day.
The process begins with listening, then it transfers to the design studio. And yes, when we say studio, we mean converted shipping containers, car trunks (honestly), tiny European cafes, slightly larger Vietnamese apartments, and our parent's houses (MUM, MORE LEMONADE! THIS. IS. SPARTA!!!)
After creating specs, we start constructing prototypes and samples. This is a long, sweaty, sometimes bloody process of elimination. Think the movie '300', but with more bags.
Then it's time to fine tune-the details – again, based on real-world feedback. We spend extra time on the finish of all our gear, because we feel super good when you look super fly.
Through all of it, we keep planning to build a bigger community to listen to. That's why we do this (whereas initially, we thought "well, even if this doesn't work, we've spent tens of thousands of dollars creating a bag we'll love for the rest of our lives").
This is an open call: if you jump on this Kickstarter project, you're part of the family. We want to hear from you in the good times and the bad. We want to design what you want to carry.
And we want to run into you wearing our stuff in the toilets at DFW, because that's where the best product research happens.
It’s come to our attention that some people assume because we make gear that looks good, and is optimised for business, that it must be weak in some way.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
While we make a concerted effort to avoid meaningless jargon, we DO make our bags ready for real life. As in, the one you spend outdoors.
Don’t believe us? Believe Duncan:
"A chilly hello from the North Sea!"
My original pack has been used on almost every adventure long/short, work/play since its arrival on my doorstep earlier this year!
It has taken a beating; got a little soggy; packed heavy and light; been taken to industry conferences/exhibitions (straps hidden), as well as missioned through packed underground systems in London, Copenhagen, Stockholm, NYC streamlined on my back; been a pillow on the beach; stocked essentials onboard numerous vessels at sea; been through an unknown number of domestic & international airport security lines, & slid happily into lockers full of rigid wheely bags just as well as it has discreetly tucked away 'under the seat in front'.
One word - Stoked!"
We’re not claiming to be perfect. But we ARE telling you that:
- Minaal gear is built for tough conditions.
- Our users lead all types of lifestyles, from office to offshore oil rig.
- When things get tough, we don’t run away.
Despite the huge surprise of raising over 11x the original goal in our first campaign, we fulfilled our physical rewards early or on time around the world (the digital ones were another matter, but hey, we’re a product company!).
We take huge amounts of care with our design, manufacturing and fulfillment processes, and would never rush a delivery date by sacrificing on quality.
We plan on delivering all rewards before the end of May 2016.
Thousands (and that's not an exaggeration) of people have helped along the way. THANK YOU – we couldn’t have done even 1% of this without you. Specific shout outs to:
Sam for his epic design.
Clay for his endless knowledge.
Morgan for knowing obscure Kiwi slang, and how to grip a camera.
Professor Kliq for Ode To Charles
Risks and challenges
It’s worth mentioning again: *we met the deadline for bags on our first Kickstarter project.* There’s no guarantee we can repeat that – we’re still doing seriously ambitious things as a very young company – but as you’ll see below, we’ve got all the right ingredients.
Manufacturing - we’re using the same manufacturer as last time. They’re *still* incredibly qualified and skilled. We’ll personally be involved in the sourcing, construction, and Quality Assurance processes.
Complexity of order fulfilment - everyone knows that some Kickstarter projects have issues fulfilling pledges on time. We've made the reward tiers even more streamlined than last time, meaning there are fewer moving parts that could affect timelines.
Product adjustments - just like last time, as we continue to test and trial the bags, we may need to make some small adjustments to improve the product. These will always be for the benefit of you, the user - and we'll let you know any time we improve something.
Customs - Kickstarter campaigns regularly fulfill orders worldwide without any issues, and we expect this to be the case with ours, too. However, we don't pretend to have intimate customs knowledge of the entire world. We'll work hard to avoid your rewards getting held up at customs, but in the end *we can't guarantee you won't experience delays or be charged import duties*. There's always a risk (just like stepping out your front door in the morning).
If you'd like to get involved, any amount helps - head back up to the top of the page, and look for the big green 'Back This Project' button on the right-hand side.
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