Stationery Startup Finds Its Season's Greetings Belated

For Minted, a local stationery company that crowdsources its cards from independent designers and then invites shoppers to customize them, the holidays should be the merriest time of the year.

As Hallmark's revenue dropped 2 percent last year, Minted was raising $41 million in capital and doubling its workforce. So far, so good — except when it's the week before Christmas, and some of your customers have yet to receive their holiday cards.

Over the last few weeks, Minted's social media pages have erupted with posts from unhappy customers who've complained about not getting their cards when promised, and not being able to extract answers from customer service.

So what's behind Greeting-Card-Gate? CEO Mariam Nacify assures us there's no Grinchian conspiracy afoot, just the growing pains of a small tech company. "What happened this year was that we ended up with more volume than we expected," Nacify says. It's reminiscent of apparel company American Giant's hoodie snafu: The retailer sold out of its entire stock in 36 hours after being reviewed in Slate. Despite a big pool of capital and big-time investors, Minted just wasn't ready for its own popularity.

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