Anne-Sophie Kergaravat is bringing the eco-friendly, organic revolution to your pets.
In July, the Astoria resident launched Paws En Vogue, a website that offers organic, eco-friendly and fair trade products for your animal friends.
Kergaravat grew up in France playing with animals, as both of her parents were veterinarians. She studied and then worked in e-commerce in Shanghai, China, before settling in New York City in September 2009.
In her first few years here she worked in consulting energy efficiency and sustainability engineers, helping them make their new construction projects eco-friendly.
"I always loved everything green," she said. "My parents are really into sustainability and green products."
After three years in consulting, Kergaravat, 29, said that while her career was rewarding and interesting, it didn't satisfy all her interests. She also had a desire to start her own business.
"I really love animals and I really loved working in e-commerce in China," she said, adding that sustainability was a third passion. "Why not put the three of them together: e-commerce, green and pets?"
At the time she saw a robust online and in-store market for organic and eco-friendly pet food, but not for green accessories - such as treats, toys, beds, cleaning and grooming products.
It turns out that pet owners desired that market, as Paws En Vogue has shipped roughly a thousand orders since July and received about 30,000 page views in September.
It's no secret that people love to spoil their animals, as Americans spent $55.7 billion on their pets last year, according to the American Pet Products Association.
Paws En Vogue will soon work with more eco-friendly companies and offer new products from its current suppliers, said Kergaravat. In the future, she wants to launch her site in other languages and provide international shipping. She is also toying with an idea of an app.
"It's growing faster than I thought, so that's a really positive thing," she said.