Jane Sahhar started as a Secondary school English teacher, who noticed how many teenagers wore headphones as the ultimate accessory. Her move to co-founding ‘Friendie’ with her husband Phil, came after a realisation that 2 children and just 1 iPad is not great math!
It all started with an audio splitter so the kids could connect two headphones to one iPad and share music and movies on the go. After purchasing a splitter for an exorbitant price, Jane and Phil looked at it and thought, “We could do this better. We could produce these. These are useful, small, simple yet powerful. They are marketable and could be made to look beautiful.”
And they embarked on a side hustle start up journey of brand creation, marketing from scratch, product creation, challenges, setbacks and triumphs. They became addicted!
Jane and Phil then noticed a gap in the market for the perfect headphones. There was nothing to compliment the splitters, which were now very successful. There were no high-end, sportsluxe headphones that were on trend, fashion forward and versatile with great sound.
Step two for Friendie was to embark on a new journey of creation and produce headphones, which opened the door for more opportunities...and some pretty big leaps of faith…and the rest is history.
Friendie has been featured on the runway at Melbourne Fashion Week, pictured in glossy magazines and online, as well as being proud partners of Miss Universe Australia in 2020 and 2021.
As a company, they are determined to give back to the community and Jane’s proudest moment of 2020 was running a “Friendie for Beyond Blue” campaign. Friendie donated headphones to those in need, asking customers to simply “Pay What You Can”, with profits going to Beyond Blue.
From a business born in their own home in country Victoria, and which begun literally in their lounge room, co-founders Jane and Phil now run a hugely successful company boasting a range of Bluetooth headphones, audio sunglasses, speakers and accessories.
Jane and Phil have also just launched another business 'The Kindness Pack' providing eco-friendly packaging.
But Jane will still tell you that her greatest achievements are their kids, Thomas and Charlotte.