Swedish brand, BabyBjörn, has been around for 60 years. As a family-run company, they’ve seen lots of change in attitudes and the global market. We caught up with Annika Sander-Lofmark, Head of Communications. Here’s what we found out…
Next year sees the 60th anniversary of BabyBjörn. Congratulations! Tell us a bit about why you got started in the baby industry all those years ago?
As a young intern Björn Jakobson spent time in the US and discovered a solution to help parents in their daily life. He had a lot of experiences from baby sitting and was familiar with the challenges parents with babies face.
He developed a baby bouncing chair in 1961 which (after some convincing advice from medical experts) became extremely popular. With both an entrepreneurial mindset and an interest in product development more products were added to the range.
Early on the products were exported, and UK and Germany were the first markets outside of Scandinavia.
What are some of the changes you’ve seen?
Parents’ situations have of course changed a lot in 60 years, needing and demanding products that can facilitate their daily lives. A major change is the dads’ involvement in the baby’s life, with much more hands-on presence than before.
Baby safety, both in knowledge and awareness has increased immensely. The shift from physical stores to online sales is of course one of the major changes we have experienced.
Social media is allowing us to directly connect with consumers all over the world, which has been a tremendous advantage. The little baby still has the same needs though…care, love and closeness.
What makes BabyBjörn special?
As a family-owned Swedish brand, BabyBjörn is based on strong values with non-negotiable demands on safety, quality and design. The relatively few products we have all have unique solutions to everyday challenges and are handed down and used by many families and babies.
All products are developed together with medical experts and hundreds of families who test prototypes and different versions until the final result lives up to the vision.
Can you explain a bit about your commitment to sustainability?
First and foremost, the products are used every day and last for generations which eliminates over consumption. In the initial stage of product development there is always focus on finding the best materials for the baby and the environment, and to design in a way that makes the transport of the products as sustainable as possible.
Long-term relationships with the suppliers ensure that the working conditions are safe and sound. As the business idea is based upon principles in the UN Child’s Convention, it is our guiding star in everything that we do. We also support different projects and initiatives that improve life for pregnant women and babies in different parts of the world.
What is your best selling product and why?
The BabyBjörn Baby Carrier Mini and the Bouncer Bliss are our most loved products. Both products offer a cosy and stimulating place for the baby in different ways. They both also help parents to be close to their babies while managing to be active and get things done at the same time.
How has your brand reacted to the coronavirus pandemic and have you had to change the way you do business?
Most of our staff have been working from home the majority of this year and the warehouse has been running with lots of new safety and health restrictions.
We have been able to support our customers in the UK in different ways. As physical meetings became impossible different online solutions have been developed. Early on we made sure that all our marketing efforts were relevant to families being at home. As there has been a great need for our products a lot of effort was put into securing the supply chain.
What exciting plans do you have for the year ahead into 2021 (if you are happy to reveal them!)?
We are very excited to launch a new collection in January with two different leopard prints in beige and anthracite for the Baby Carrier One, Mini and Bouncer Bliss. Later in the year we have somethings even more exciting coming but it is too early to reveal so stay tuned!