How did the founder of Gwynnie Bee go from her apartment to 450 employees in two years?

Gwynnie Bee founder and CEO Christine Hunsicker (courtesy CBS News)

Work from Home

Want to launch a company? Then prepare for the very concept of work-life balance to disappear. One founder, however, took that truism to an extreme.

Gwynnie Bee is a clothing rental service for plus-sized women, offering a variety of subscription plans.

The company launched out of founder and CEO Christine Hunsicker’s Manhattan apartment in 2013. Today, they’re a team of 450 people with offices in Long Island City, Palo Alto, Columbus, Ohio and Bangalore, India.

“We were shipping out of my apartment for the first year,” Hunsicker told us. “It started slowly, with 12 hour days where everybody was at my place, and then we were running laundry late at night, and I ended up with people at my apartment 20 hours a day. We moved out all my furniture except for my bed upstairs, so it became obsessive. There was no separation between me and the business. When we finally moved out, the amount of pent-up relief I had, that I didn’t notice… I finally realized how mentally unhealthy it was.”

Hunsicker credits much of the company’s rapid success to a rigorous data-backed approach. “We look like an apparel company… but about 75% of the company is in engineering, data science, and product management,” she said.

You can learn more about Gwynnie Bee right here.