OwlSpark | Rice University Startup Accelerator | TeamWise: Ascent Décor
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TeamWise: Ascent Décor

These days, renters are moving frequently between cities and countries. So how can you make a house a home when moving and shipping costs have skyrocketed? That’s the question Bo Jin, founder of Ascent Décor, is solving. Ascent Décor offers rented or purchase-to-own home decor items to short-term apartment renters from a collection of tailored, pre-selected designer level home décor solutions.

Like most entrepreneurs, Bo’s idea started at home. A short-term renter himself, Bo moved to the United States from China to pursue his MBA at Rice University. Facing the possibility of moving out of the city or the country post-graduation, he and his family opted for an apartment and began to search for furniture and décor options to personalize their space. He secured furniture easily, but it has proven difficult to find décor that suited his style and space. Although décor can be inexpensive, it can take weeks to create a cohesive decorative scheme and source pieces of art individually. Additionally, with the cost of shipping and risk of damage or loss of items, Bo would either need to sell them at a loss or discard them when he moves again.

The issue is of particular importance to Bo because he lives with his wife and children, and he wants them to feel as though the place that they live is home, and not a temporary housing arrangement. “I currently have no décor on my walls, they’re bare. It is important [to me] to try to provide the right environment for them,” he stated.

Bo is excited by the idea that he can solve this very issue for renters like him.

I enjoy the process of realizing an idea from start to finish. This can be obtained from owning an end-to-end P&L or being a program manager in a corporation. But starting up a business on my own will give me the flexibility and control to implement my idea and witness the results faster and more meaningful.

He’s even willing to showcase his apartment as a model home when all is said and done. For now, Bo is working hard to build out the platform, taking advantage of the resources, tools, mentorship, and industry expertise that OwlSpark has to offer.

OwlSpark creates a safe environment for me to connect classroom learnings with real world business situations during the summer. The thing I enjoy the most is all the people around me. `{`The`}` Leadership Team provides unconditional support. All of the founders have genuine interest in your success. I'm grateful that I'm surrounded by talented people who inspire me, help me and encourage me all the time. Not only I have the opportunity to propel my business idea to the next level, but also I've made life long friends in OwlSpark program.