Personal services for the very busy, pregnant exec
Rosie Pope is co-founder and Creative Director of Rosie Pope Maternity + Baby, but reality TV fans may remember her from the Bravo television series, “Pregnant in Heels.” The show followed her “maternity concierge” service, which she defined as “a one-stop shop and source of support for pregnant women and new parents,” and her clients often included C-suite executives with unique priorities.
“The services they need are often centered around figuring out how to maximize time with their baby while juggling work,” she told Fortune.
Pope is now mother to four children, so she’s scaled back her concierge service, and now she only takes clients whose cases she considers personally meaningful. Her last client, for example, was a terminally ill woman who stopped medical treatment to carry her unplanned baby to term; Pope performed her services pro bono.
But while Pope downshifted, the field itself has grown, and there are other women — and men — catering to the expectant exec. For fees ranging from $29.95 to $10,000, these professionals locate the best breast pump and investigate strollers and will provide a “baby butler” and more. “I think it’s great if I have inspired people to do something that they are passionate about, or have had some hand in creating a niche industry,” Pope said.
Fortune takes a look at a few of the businesses that have followed in her footsteps.
Elite Lifestyle Management
Based in San Diego, Elite Lifestyle Management serves the client’s needs when she’s too busy to do so. Or, as in the case of the pregnant executive, when she’s too overcome with morning sickness, back pain and swollen feet to do anything but suffer.
“From planning baby showers, to finding a breast pump at 12 am, to finding certifiable home baby-proofers, we provide it all,” CEO Michelle St. Clair said. And when the baby is born, the company arranges meal preparation, home care and housecleaners.
Elite’s annual membership fee is $2,500 for 24-hour-a-day concierge service, and each request is good for a fee of $45 a pop. In comparison to other services of this kind, that’s a steal, but just because the service isn’t ludicrously expensive, it doesn’t mean that they don’t recognize the importance of what they do.
“Pregnant CEOs have high-stress, full-time jobs,” St. Clair said. “They don’t have time to research and purchase the best stroller to suit their lifestyle… They really rely on us to make proper recommendations, and trust our judgment.”
Located in New York City, Cedra Pharmacy offers personal membership programs in which a client’s personal pharmacist and OB/GYN coordinate efforts, and includes such services as creating prenatal vitamin regimens, arranging pick-ups and drop-offs for doctor visits, and prenatal workouts. The average program runs about $5,000 a month, according to founder Mazen Karnaby.
“One big issue during pregnancy is gestational diabetes,” he said. “Cedra will come to your apartment with a blood glucose meter and educate the patient on how to utilize the meter and properly read its outputs.”
He said that the company works to ensure that a client’s time management issues and workplace stress don’t become detrimental factors in her health during pregnancy, and added that Cedra continues to offer services after the birth.
“A nurse and driver are available to take you to your pediatrician appointments, and even the baby’s medications can now be handled by Cedra,” he said. “If your new child is prescribed a liquid medication that isn’t easily taken by them, since we do our own compounding we can create that medication in a suppository form for you to make the entire situation easier on the patient.”
Red Carpet Kids
Red Carpet Kids is an “experiential entertainment and event company” based in New York City. According to co-founder and CEO Eva Shure, the company has three divisions — Experiential Entertainment, Interactive Educational Programming, and Hospitality, with the latter division catering to expecting mothers.
“We believe in a personalized and holistic approach in educating and assisting new mothers on their options for their pregnancy, delivery, and their newborn child,” she said.
Retainers start at $10,000, but clients get a lot for their money, including a doula, a lactation expert, baby shower planning and “Very Important Baby (VIB) Consultation and Classes,” which entails visits to the home or office for private consultations. It also offers “Baby Butlers,” who provide necessities and a second set of hands.
“Manhattan-based Moms can call a Baby Butler for hectic days where they have many errands or tasks and need an extra helping hand. If the spouse is unavailable or the nanny has the day off, or if the mom may just need some extra help,” she said.
Many pregnant women insist on doing everything themselves, and would not even entertain the idea of a maternity concierge at gunpoint. However, forty weeks is a long time, and eventually, certain individual tasks will get farmed out, particularly ones that involve standing on lines for hours on end. This is where MissNowMrs.com comes in.
“Female CEOs tend not to change their names after marriage, but being pregnant can change that, and often does,” said CEO Danielle Tate, whose own name-change misadventures inspired her to found her company. The service turns this tedious chore, which is rife with red tape, into the greatest thing in the world – someone else’s problem.
“Our service asks a few questions and uses the answers to auto-complete all the necessary legal forms,’ she said. These include Social Security forms, IRS 8822, driver’s licenses, voter registration forms, letters to creditors, and so on, ad nauseam. MissNowMrs.com has assisted over 300,000 women in their transition from Miss to Mrs. since its founding in 2007.
“Most clients who are pregnant complete and file their forms prior to the birth of their child to ensure matching names on the birth certificate,” she said. “Once printed and filed, new documents in the CEO’s new name will be issued by the various government agencies within two weeks.”
Daniel Bukszpan is a New York-based freelance writer.