While it seemed everyone rushed to stock up on toilet paper at the start of the pandemic, a group of Black men saw it as an opportunity to launch a startup that brings a new toilet tissue line to the market.
Five Black men from Ohio, who call themselves “mogul minds,” created a toilet paper brand called “Leafy.” With the company motto, “Go Green, Stay Clean,” Leafy is an eco-friendly brand that focuses on the betterment of the environment through the benefits of bamboo.
According to the company website, the founders say, “We look to educate and elevate consumers to be more socially conscious through the use of biodegradable paper products. We partner with organizations centered on environmental solutions and organizations that elevate underserved communities to build sustainability.”
In addition to being good for the environment, the brand is intended to benefit local communities.
“We wanted to bring in a product that would have a direct impact on the community, co-founder D’Andre Martin told WBNS. “Proceeds from our toilet paper company are going back to minority communities,” added co-founder Charles Peaks.
While the group launched the business only a few months ago, Leafy is already thriving. The brand can be found in local grocery stores in Ohio, the Hyatt, and on the company’s website.
“We feel amazing about it,” Marvin Green, another of the founders, told WSYX. “It’s exciting, we look forward to watching it grow.”
Leafy now joins a short nationwide list of Black-owned paper product brands and is the first in the state of Ohio. In fact, the state of Ohio is reporting that 2020 was a record year for new businesses in the state, with around 160,000 new businesses that launched.
While the founders say they enjoy the success so far, it’s about more than making money.
“We’re not even thinking about money right. It’s about growing our communities, being able to help, educate people, and get them more aware of what they’re using,” the group told WSYX.