When Ukrainian entrepreneur Igor Fostenko created his first wooden map to put on an empty wall in his office, he didn’t expect to turn the decorative piece into a business bringing him $12 million in sales annually. Called Enjoy the Wood, Fostenko’s company sells the maps to over 90 countries on the world’s biggest marketplaces – Etsy, Amazon and Ebay.

Enjoy the Wood has been featured in the media many times since its launch in 2014, but the company recently created buzz again in June after raising $817,000 from 3,474 backers on the U.S.-based crowdfunding platform Kickstarter.

Enjoy the Wood delivers its wooden maps in flat boxes that contain wooden continents, planes, boats, compasses, double-sided sticky tape and names of oceans. It takes just a couple of hours to assemble a map and put it on the wall. (Enjoy the Wood/Facebook)

After its first launch on Kickstarter in 2018, Enjoy the Wood raised $100,000 from 655 backers; in the second round in 2019, the company attracted $533,530 from 1,851 backers, surpassing its $5,000 goal a hundred times over. The overall investment into the company since the first campaign has exceeded $1 million. The latest round of $817,000 is one of the largest crowdfunding rounds on Kickstarter in the history of Ukrainian startups.


Fostenko said that he was the first to introduce wooden wall maps to the market. His company handcrafts its maps in a studio near Kyiv using eco-friendly birch plywood imported from Belarus. The company delivers the maps in a compact flat box that usually contains wooden continents, islands, names of the oceans, planes, boats and a compass. It takes just a couple of hours to assemble a map using double-sided sticky tape, already cut into pieces. No special tools or equipment are needed.

Apart from maps, Enjoy the Wood handcrafts wooden accessories, sunglasses, watches, cutting boards and rolling pins. The company delivers its goods to 90 countries but manufactures them in a studio near Kyiv.

Customers can choose the size and color of a map. They can also adorn it with flags, pins or colorful backlights. In 2021, the company added new features to the map: it now changes colors during the day and glows or twinkles in the dark. One such map cost nearly $250 but backers on Kickstarter can get it with a 40% discount.

The company’s biggest market is the U.S. American customers love to mark their native states on the map with a heart-shaped pin, Fostenko said. Other big markets include Canada, Germany, Australia, Singapore and the U.K. Ukraine accounts for nearly 15% of all sales. Among its customers in Ukraine are local hotels, universities and even the Security Service of Ukraine.


Apart from wall maps, the company also sells hand-made wooden globes, jigsaw puzzles and music boxes. For one of the music boxes, with the name of the popular Harry Potter movie engraved on its lid, the U.S. Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. filed suit against Enjoy the Wood for copyright infringement. Fostenko settled the matter, paid a minor $3,000 fine and has since become a partner of Warner Bros.

Fostenko is used to dealing with challenges. His father left his family when Fostenko was 3, and his mother died when he was 11. He was taken to an orphanage but ran away, and lived on the streets of Kyiv for several years. When he was 15, he met a Christian, who became his friend, invited Fostenko to live with him, and introduced him to a church.

Fostenko is now married and has four children. He has made peace with his father and even hired him. Fostenko’s wife, Maryna, helps him with their business that now employs nearly 100 people.


Fostenko told the Kyiv Post that there wasn’t any secret behind his success – just an interesting idea packaged in an interesting way, a high-quality product and support from a huge circle of good friends.

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