Customization as a key factor for business

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What is it about customizing something that draws our attention? Maybe it is the array of colors and designs to choose from, the fact that we want more, or the ability to make it personal and unique.

Customization is often a factor when purchasing a product, and two startups by BYU students are taking customization to the center of their companies.

Sabek Outerwear and Lyke Time are two different companies with a twist when it comes to customization.

Sabek, launching this November, may sell what looks to be an average ski or snowboard jacket. In reality, Sabek offers a product that can be switched up from day to day depending on moods, preference, weather, style and other factors.

“There are some other companies that do custom jackets, but you need to go on their website and make the jacket,” said Price Foulger, Sabek CEO and founder. “You can’t change it after that. But this, any day you can change the colors up. It is really versatile,” he continued. “It is custom in design, style and fit.”

Sabek, a startup by BYU student, Price Foulger, will offer customization in ski and snowboard jackets. Photo by Sabek
Sabek, a startup formed by BYU student Price Foulger, launches this November and will offer customization in ski and snowboard jackets. (Photo by Sabek)

The Sabek jacket has detachable sleeves and a hood that can be taken off and changed up with other colors and materials. With colors of “neon green, red, greyish blue, and black” along with special grey sweatshirt and blue flannel sleeves available this first Sabek season, customers have hundreds of options to choose from depending on how they mix things up.

Foulger also referred to one of the ideas behind Sabek. “I used to spend all my money every year, getting a new jacket because I’d get sick of my old one. So, I kind of came up with this idea.”

JD Schoen, Lyke Time CEO and cofounder, also mentioned cost as a benefit of customization of watches, the main product of Lyke Time.

“If you want to coordinate your watches with your outfits you end up spending thousands of dollars on all these different watches,” Schoen said. “We just thought why don’t we just create one watch that can do it all.”

Lyke Watches, the company’s watch collection, is based on the idea of customization. The pieces of the watch are interchangeable and can be put together with other colors to create the watch of a person’s choice.

“We want to create a customizable experience in the apparel industry,” Schoen said.

Lyke Watches offer over 1000 combinations to produce a custom watch for any occasion. Photo by Lyke Time
Lyke Watches offers over 1,000 combinations to produce a custom watch for any occasion. (Photo by Lyke Time)

Lyke Time officially started September 2011 and has 13 main colors for customers to choose from on the Lyke Watch line. When marketing the product, Lyke Time lets potential buyers know there are over 1,000 combinations for any occasion.

“I like my stuff a certain way,” said BYU student Mat Squires when asked about why he likes things customized. “I like a certain flavor of life or flavor of living. For example, I love things that are red and black. I have a red truck. I have a red golf bag. I have red things.”

Shoppers, especially online, are familiar with the ability to customize most anything. Stores have made major profits off of the idea of mass customization.

Take Build-A-Bear for example. People every day visit Build-A-Bear to build their stuffed animals and customize them, from the sounds the bears make to the shoes they wear.

Even in the food industry, customization is apparent. Ever been to a frozen yogurt shop and put together your own dessert? What about McDonald’s and picked your favorite meal? “Would you like fries with that?”

Both Sabek and Lyke Time recognize the need for customization and the benefits for consumers. Although the clients that they work with are different, the idea behind them is essentially the same. People like what they wan,t when they want it.

Sabek and Lyke Time products can be purchased online and have plans to expand. Lyke Time is working on distribution and said, “In the next couple months you’ll start seeing (Lyke Watches) in stores.”

For more information on Sabek, visit www.sabek.com.

For more information on Lyke Time and Lyke Watches, visit www.lyketime.com

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