SAN FRANCISCO – Jimmyjane founder Ethan Imboden participated in the WIRED by Design two-day live magazine event with a presentation called “How to Design a Business” about the learning curve he experienced in leaving the corporate world for his own start-up, Jimmyjane.
Imboden entered the pleasure products industry with an entrepreneurial background in design and engineering, spanning more than 10 years in brand and product development for top design firms and consulting for clients such as Ford, Motorola, Dell and Nike. In 2003, he founded Jimmyjane with the goal of leveraging his integrated design philosophy within the pleasure products industry to transform the consumer experience.
In his presentation, Imboden discusses the groundbreaking crossover of the brand with products sold at Nordstrom and Louis Vuitton and exposure in Esquire magazine and “The Today Show.”
According to Imboden, design is the cornerstone of a startup company.
“Everything you create you can see the effect,” he said of Jimmyjane’s rough start that leading to bankruptcy. Imboden said he learned through experience about what entrepreneurship brings to design.
Referring to the business adage of “fast, cheap, good – choose two,” Imboden said that when he started, the designer in him wanted it to be “good, good, good."
“The Form 6 was extremely slow [to produce], extremely good but not cheap,” he said.
Nevertheless, Jimmyjane was serving a niche, however he said he wanted to expand to a broader audience, and along came the hello touch.
Based on traditional finger vibes, Imboden said he aimed to offer a better option with three times the power and silent operation.
“The hello touch has been welcoming new customers to the brand since its launch in 2013,” he said. “Unlike Form 6, this one launched on time, on budget and with great margins.”
Imboden now encourages professionals to “design the impact, not the product.”
Following the acquisition of Jimmyjane by Pipedream Products parent company Diamond Products, Imboden has moved on to Frog, a global design firm where he serves as the head of venture design, and specializes in “[leveraging] design on the creation of new business.”
To view Imboden’s presentation, click here.