Part 1 of 2: Kickstarter helps ZakiBox take flight
By Hansol Hwang
There is no limit when it comes to creativity, but the Achilles’ heel to its reality is money.
That is why companies like Kickstarter have created a funding platform in order to bring dreams, creative projects and ideas of artists, filmmakers, musicians, designers and other creators to life.
Kickstarter has brought to life the ideas of well known musicians and artists such as De La Soul and Marina Abramovic, and furthermore brings life to the ideas of even the neighbor next door such as Sam Morcos, creator of ZakiBox.
“Kickstarter is well known. It has a bigger platform and most people know about it,” Morcos said. “ZakiBox was an idea in April 2017.” Now the idea is $7,081 closer to fruition.
ZakiBox is the reinvention of the box. It is a strong, lightweight, waterproof and compact box made out of fiberglass and nylon – engineered and created by Morcos who used to be an aerospace engineer for Boeing and worked on space shuttles and satellites.
The goal for ZakiBox is to raise $20,000 in pledges. Pledges range from $25 to $1,000 or more. Each pledge type comes with its own gift and perk. For example, a pledge of $25 or more helps veterans – a group of people who Morcos cares deeply about. For this pledge Morcos will donate $5 to the Fisher House Foundation, a group that aids veterans transitioning back into civilian life. Additionally, Morcos will donate $1 to the Fisher House Foundation per ZakiBox sold.
All other pledge types and perks are listed on the side section of the ZakiBox’s Kickstarter website. But backers only pay these pledges when the $20,000 goal is reached. If the goal is not reached by the deadline then nothing happens – no one’s credit card is charged and the project is unable to be funded. The deadline is Dec. 14.
The box comes in two designs as of now: the on-the-go model and the organizer/storage model, according to Morcos.
The on-the-go is 18 inches wide, 18 inches in length and 24 inches in height. It comes with wheels and a trolley handle. And the organizer/storage model is 24 inches wide, 18 inches in length and 24 inches in height. Additionally, both boxes, when empty, are light enough for a young girl to hold in each hand.
In regards to the name “Zaki,” it actually means smart in Arabic, Morcos said. This was not the first name that came to Morcos’ mind.
“One day I was with my family, my children and I were at the Angel game in Anaheim and my brain couldn’t stop. I couldn’t watch the game. I was preoccupied with the name, what would I call it?” Morcos said. “My daughter-in-law said, ‘Why don’t we call it smart in a foreign language.’”
Originally, Morcos wanted to call it “Smart Box,” but the domain name for it was already purchased and unavailable.
“So we thought about smart in French, Spanish and different languages and it didn’t sound good,” Morcos said. “I am Egyptian and I speak Arabic. I wondered what is smart in Arabic? It is Zaki.”
Even though Morcos thought of the name that day, the name Zaki was always a part of his family and himself.
“So zaki means smart in Arabic and to make things more interesting my father’s name was Zaki. So my father’s name is Zaki and my middle name is also Zaki,” he said.
Kickstarter launched in April 28, 2009, with 154,585 projects successfully funded, $4 billion pledged, which equates to 16 million people who have backed projects.
“People love it when they see it; the problem is, it’s not out,” Morcos said. “Our space is becoming smaller and smaller. Maybe this is the future way of storing and organizing our home.”