CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- When life throws you a layoff, why not start your own business? That's what a Charlotte father did. And reading books to his young son is what gave him his master plan.
"I was laid off in April from being a consultant," said Phil Dauksys. After 12 years in project management, he was a husband and father looking for his next opportunity. It came from a back and forth with his five year old. "He said Mommy read that one last night. And I said what about this one? And he said she read that one two nights ago," he said.
Dauksys thought, wouldn't it be nice if his family had an endless supply of new releases and old classics delivered to their door without having to spend so much buying them. "So, we came up with the concept of Netflix for children's books," he added. The result is the newly launched, Charlotte based book rental website, www.growupwithbooks.com.
"You can add as many books to your queue as you want and then on a monthly basis as you return books we ship out the next set of books," he said. Plans range from $13.00 for three books a month to $40.00 for fifteen. Shipping is free. The books are sanitized. And if you want to keep a favorite, you can buy it at a reduced price.
"There are some other on-line book companies, but this is tailored to the zero to 12 children's focus. So everything that we do is focused on the children and reading development for the child," he said. The business has a reading consulting team that chooses, reads and reviews each and every book. "We serve as a filter for parents," he said.
"If you like a certain book, the website will recommend other books," said Dauksys. For now, the company is based in a small office in Charlotte's Plaza-Midwood neighborhood. His brother operates the warehouse out of his garage in Virginia. "Small office: small garage. And yes, we think there's the potential to be big," he said.
If you're thinking, it has to be a tough time to start a business, Dauksys says yes it is. But consider this. "A lot of successful businesses and a lot of the greater businesses were started in a recession or a time when it was hard," he said.
"Right now, it's that small family business that we're excited about."
To learn more about Grow Up With Books, check out the company's website at, www.growupwithbooks.com