A top Morgan Stanley banker invested in his friend’s start-up that makes men’s underwear out of bamboo. (Yep. You read that correctly) [via The Sun] Brian Magnus, Morgan Stanley’s co-head of private equity who previously served as head of the firm’s U.K. investment banking, put forth capital for his childhood friend’s company Wild Horse Clothing Ltd.’s “Got Wood” bamboo underwear line.
“We thought it would be fun to launch something like this. He did all the work and I provided a bit of working capital,” Magnus told Business Insider in a telephone interview. He declined to specify the amount of capital he invested, but he hinted that it was a few thousand pounds necessary to cover the cost of patenting the brand.
The boxer briefs, which come in three colours, are made from 95% bamboo fibre and 5% spandex. Got Wood touts its underpants as having both anti-bacterial and moisture absorbing properties.
What’s more is Magnus told Business Insider that he really enjoys wearing them.
“Oh yeah, I wear them all the time and so does my thirteen year-old son,” he said, adding, “It’s just fantastic, the bamboo really holds colours, it doesn’t shrink, it feel great — really soft next to your skin.”
He explained that the name Got Wood was “a bit of a joke” adding that some retailers might find it “too edgy.”
The underwear currently retails online, but Magnus explained how that could be problematic.
“One of the problems with online, frankly, people who don’t know bamboo is a fabric — they need to touch and feel it. They think they might get splinters where they don’t want splinters. Hopefully people will get more used to seeing this as underwear,” he said.
The company’s founder Anthony Abis, who was best friends with Magnus when they were seven-years-old, spent nearly 14 months designing and sampling before launching Got Wood in January.
So far, it’s been a great learning experience for Magnus.
“It’s a fantastic learning experience,” he said. “It really teaches you about the possibility in difficult economic times. It’s good to know you can do something like this and nothing is impossible.”
It’s also been a lot of fun for him as well.
“If you do what I do, which is more of the institutional end, it’s great fun to have an experience to do something a bit more entrepreneurial and getting in a start-up.”
Check out a video from Got Wood below and see more pictures of the underwear here.