Business 2.0: The Sleep Economy
Tucked in an alley off Manhattan's financial district is a darkened storefront dotted with eight futuristic-looking white pods. Reclining in the capsules are two Wall Streeters who've ducked in for a quick $14 noontime snooze at MetroNaps. The startup operates two New York locations and an outpost in Vancouver, British Columbia, and is expanding to Australia and the United Kingdom. It also leases sleep pods to companies offering nap rooms as the latest fringe benefit in a 24/7 world.
Some call it the sleep economy - a burgeoning $20 billion business of aromatherapy pillows, high-tech beds, face masks, biorhythmic alarm clocks, and, yes, naps. The market is growing because, frankly, we're exhausted and sleeping less each year.