In the Fall of 2017, I lost my Aunt Cathy unexpectedly. Within minutes of receiving the news of my aunt’s passing, I booked the first flight back home to Rochester, New York. Over the next few days, I sat with my family through the process of organizing my aunt’s funeral. I began to witness how cumbersome the planning process is: from collecting contributions from relatives, waiting on hold repeatedly, to playing phone tag for information, driving 45 minutes one way to drop off documents only to find no funeral director being present, to the miscommunication between our funeral director and my family. All this in a time when arrangements need to be effortless for those who have just lost their loved one.
After we laid my aunt to rest, I spent the next few months calling different funeral homes across the United States to understand the challenges they face. We found that funeral homes are being hit at the core of their business model by the changes occurring within the industry as noted here:
– Preference for cremation is increasing with the corresponding decrease in traditional burials. This results in revenue decreases which affect funeral homes bottom line.
– Family cultural attitudes are changing and are demanding more individual attention and hand-holding than ever before, and this stretches the ability of directors to be available to all of their clients at the same time in the manner families are coming to expect.
– There is little technology that exists which allows funeral directors to effectively manage all the different touch points with their families during the planning process. Funeral directors will be facing an increase of 75.4 million customers due to the aging Baby Boomer Generation. Funeral directors will struggle to handle the additional demand effectively with the current methods in place.
After thinking thoroughly about these challenges in the funeral industry, I was inspired to create Kaathy. We have created a central hub for funeral directors and families to connect and plan together from anywhere.
In many ways, my Aunt Cathy was the bond that brought our family together and could bring a smile to anyone’s face. In her honor, we have named the company after her; and we believe the name is fitting as now you become a part of our family.
We want to work with you in helping one million families who are experiencing this difficult time to find a comforting, uncomplicated, supportive process. When the day is over, they will thank you for your caring, and you will thank Kaathy for her assistance.
CEO & Founder at Kaathy
Jeffrey (Me) bottom left; my brother Anthony bottom right; my Aunt Cathy in the middle; my Cousin Teddy in my Aunt’s arms; my uncle, big Ted top left.