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Christine and Eric Musick created in 2019 Louis and Léa, their subscription box company whose products are intended for mothers and newborns. Parents of five children themselves, these entrepreneurs based in St. Pierre Jolys want to offer high-quality eco-friendly products and contribute to the development of Canadian businesses.
Christine and Eric Musick’s business is based on family values, which are very important for the parents of five children: Mason, Félix, Samuel, Patrice and little Juliette, born in 2021. They are inspired by their family life, and their children, to offer the best possible products to parents and future parents, via Louis and Léa boxes.
”The products we share have been tested with Juliette,” explains Eric Musick. We make sure to always evaluate the products, which change in each box, every month. We often focus on products that the baby will need.”
The name of their company, Louis and Léa, refers to ancestors on both sides of the proud French-speaking family. But how did it all start? In 2017, a tragic event turned Eric Musick’s life upside down, questioning him about his life. “My father passed away in 2017,” he says. It made me realize that life is too short. It goes by so fast and it’s important not to have any regrets. I was happy, but I didn’t necessarily like my job… It was time to try something different. We then decided to take a chance.”
Christine and Eric Musick then decide to start their own business, facing multiple risks. But it’s also a dream come true. The couple had always wanted to work together. After 15 years in communications, Eric Musick seizes the opportunity to change careers. Eighteen months of reflection later, in December 2019, the couple found the business they wanted to develop. “Getting into entrepreneurship is not for everyone, it’s a big risk. But that’s life. It’s an adventure every day!”
Christine and Eric Musick wanted to get into something they know well: baby products. With five children at home, they know what they are talking about. “We felt there was a lack of Canadian or Manitoban products, even eco-friendly or high-quality products. There are a lot of subscription boxes like that in the U.S., others in Canada, and they do that very well. But not so much for the first year of baby, nor in our style. We said to ourselves: If we don’t find what we want, there are surely other families who think the same. We really want to focus on quality and local products.”
Louis and Léa offers three types of monthly subscriptions: for 12 months ($49.99/box), 6 months ($53.99/box), or month per month, without commitment ($59.99/box). For 6- and 12-month subscriptions, a bag is offered. “We take care of our new members and build a relationship. It’s fun, every month, we create a new theme. Each box is a new experience, a surprise.”
In each box, there is always a product for mom, two or three for the baby and a printed poster created by Christine Musick, who is a freelance graphic designer. These exclusive products are available according to the theme of the box: bath or sand toys, wooden toys, teething toys, sleep or food-related items. It’s a very wide selection. Eric Musick: “Sometimes we offer advice sheets for baby sleep, other times things to stimulate the baby’s brain or just things for comfort.”
When Christine and Eric Musick are not creating their own products, they make sure to source from Canadian creators to support local, Manitoba or Canadian producers. Their choice relies on quality products, another of their essential values. As a matter of fact, they have established ties with a Québec company whose products can also be purchased on Louis and Léa’s website.
The entrepreneurial road has its share of challenges, especially when you are just starting out. “Being new to the industry, it takes a whole process to find your place among online businesses. We’re starting from scratch. You have to learn advertising, ads, social media. You have to be resourceful. No one is going to do the business for you. At the end of the day, it’s a lot of decision-making. Every decision has a consequence or reward.”
But the strength of the Musick couple lies in its complementarity. “I see the big picture and Christine is very much in the details. We have to help each other and trust each other. Together, we find creative ways to reach people.”
In the future, the creators of Louis and Léa hope to grow locally. “We have connections in big provinces, like Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia. We did a few markets in Winnipeg, in St. Norbert, but our vision is really to develop more here locally.”
“We appreciate people that give a chance to small local businesses like ours, whether in St. Boniface, St. Jean-Baptiste or elsewhere. For small business, your support makes a big difference. And for the Canadian economy as well.”