Meet Nicole Bassett, cofounder of The Renewal Workshop. Nicole and her startup team went through The Mill’s Idea Lab program in 2015, and just finished TMC3, which is the third cohort for The Mill’s Startup Accelerator in downtown Las Vegas.
“I live in Hood River, OR now with my husband and two dogs. My career has mostly been in sustainability in the apparel industry,” said Bassett. “I worked for companies like Patagonia and PrAna improving their supply chains and how to make clothing more environmental and socially better.”
The Renewal Workshop’s factory in located in Cascade Locks, Oregon. The team is redefining waste in the apparel industry. Their leading-edge facility produces renewed apparel and creates new American jobs each day.
“A jacket with a broken zipper isn’t waste. We fix it and get it back out to where it was meant to be – keeping you warm as you explore the world,” the team writes on their website. “In Fall 2016, our heroic partners will introduce Renewed Apparel to the world. These brands are the first in the apparel industry to become the closed-loop brands leading the Renewable Movement.”
Bassett and her team first had the idea to join The Mill when co-founder Jeff Denby connected with friend Jill Murphy, one of the founders of The Mill.
“As we were looking at accelerators we got excited about the work that The Mill was doing,” explained Bassett. “Having the personal relationship with The Mill was definitely a plus. In addition, we really resonated with the values of The Mill and the types of companies and entrepreneurs that they were supporting.”
The Mill helps develop strong cultures, smart revenue models, effective marketing strategies, and meaningful customer relationships. As part of The Mill Startup Accelerator program, Bassett says the biggest challenge was the team’s timeline.
“We had to hustle quickly to pull together our information to create an investor deck and start pitching,” she recalled. “As part of the cohort, we also were pressed for time to put together a strong go to market strategy and all the information required to make it successful. We got both of these done in a way that we were proud and excited by the deliverables.”
The Mill recently closed applications The Mill’s 4th Cohort of teams (TMC4,) which kicks off in early August 2016. Sara Hill, Cofounder & Managing Partner at The Mill, says with each new cohort the bar gets higher. The Mill is looking for amazing, diverse, customer focused startups, that are based anywhere in North America, who are ready to test out product/market fit or are ready to grow their customer base. Application information can be found here.
“It is often said, but it is so true – what you put in as far as your own time and energy and openness you will get out of it ten fold,” said Bassett when asked about advice for new accelerator teams. “Jill and Sara create a really open platform for learning all the while guiding you through a process. So trust the process and you will be excited as to what emerges.”
After experiencing the #VegasTech ecosystem, Bassett said she became the biggest advocate for downtown Las Vegas and the startup ecosystem.
“I loved being in downtown Las Vegas,” she said. “I came home and was the biggest advocate for downtown Las Vegas and the #VegasTech scene. I had no idea there were so many creatives, entrepreneurs, and companies in the area. I learned a lot and enjoyed my time.”
Bassett’s biggest focus right now is selling the company’s product. This will start with the launch of an Indiegogo campaign.
“Help getting the word out that people are now able to purchase Renewed Apparel is super helpful,” she said. “After the Indiegogo campaign, we will launch our full ecommerce marketplace in the fall and we are always working on adding more brands to the company. The company is really new for the apparel industry and has a big vision of how we are going to change our industry. So thank you to those helping to get the word out about our company.”
Keep up to date with Bassett and The Renewable Workshop here.
Get to know other community members in the #VegasTech ecosystem. Follow our Meet #VegasTech Community Members series.