Jennifer Labit identified a critical need and launched a business Featured

10:10am EDT July 5, 2011
Jennifer Labit identified a critical need and launched a business

Former IT programmers Jennifer Labit and her husband, Jimmy, began Cotton Babies with a $100 investment and some space on a kitchen shelf. It grew from there to a closet, then a bedroom, then to the basement and finally into commercial space.

The Labits discovered that cloth diapers on the market at that time did not have all the features their young family needed. Necessity, as they say, leads to invention, and in 2005, they introduced a diaper as near perfect as they could design ? the bumGenius. It was a one-size, environmentally friendly cloth diaper featuring a patented butterfly closure system, adjustable snaps and high absorbency. It is the biggest selling brand of cloth diapers in North America.

Jenn took her green business from an online store to what are now three retail stores, as well. She has been able to innovate in terms of manufacturing efficiencies to accommodate her product designs. Her company now carries hundreds of product lines. Jenn inspires her team to take ownership of Cotton Babies, pushing them to lead the cloth diaper industry forward.

To that effort, she founded the Real Diaper Industry Association, a nonprofit entity, in 2008. The group’s goal is to expand consumer awareness of cloth diapers and support industry needs in the growing cloth diaper market. Her goals are to continue growth of the cloth diaper industry by reducing waste and raising the standard of living in areas her company has influence.

Cotton Babies also conducts outreach to targeted families to get cloth diapers into use by the less fortunate. The company also provides cloth diapers to thousands of missionaries through a diaper grant program for their families.

In an industry filled with wide diversity, Cotton Babies hopes to build bridges with people, not walls over differences. Retail stores are operated under the premise that “Every mom leaves our store feeling like a good mom.”

How to reach: Cotton Babies Inc., (888) 332-2243 or www.cottonbabies.com