Starting Our Business - A Plan (Day 1)


One Startup. 30 Days. No Secrets. Start at the beginning.

Today is the first day of our 30 day challenge, where Casey and I attempt to create a simple but kickass business and product, focused on spicy honey, in just 30 days. We’re documenting the journey so you can be a part of process and decisions, and use our journey as inspiration to launch your own company.

Our kickoff brainstorm started, naturally, with our favorite pizza. We quickly created and discussed a list of topics which includes:

-Structure / Equity

-Expectations / Roles & Responsibilities

-Needs for launch

-Marketing

-Production

Structure / Roles: Casey kills it in the kitchen and, in my opinion, is Mr. Brooklyn so he will be focused on the product development and local community while I am excited to nerd-out on strategy and marketing ideas and so will be focused on the business and admin activities. Our responsibilities will overlap most on marketing, but are meant to tie directly to our strengths and particular interests.  

Equity: Casey and I have never worked together, unless you count eating pizza and drinking whiskey as work. So, how can we know what value we will each contribute in the long run? If we don't know the value we will contribute, how can we determine equity stakes in this venture? Since no one knows that answer, we decided to base equity on the facts we know today.  Today, we know that we each bring a required set of skills and interest to this project, without which it would stall indefinitely.  Said another way, we feel that we need each other equally as of today.

As we each bring a required 50% to the table in terms of skills, equity will be split evenly between us and a required finance component: ⅓ Casey, ⅓ Morgen, ⅓ Capital (Up to $5k committed by Morgen).  Equity will vest over 4 years with a 1-year cliff for both of us. This means that if either of us were to leave for a life-changing opportunity at another hot-sauce startup prior to one year, we would leave with zero ownership. At one year, we will earn 25% of our respective total equity piece, and 1/36th of the remaining total every month thereafter until the 4 year mark.    

Our Plan:

  1. Decide on a company name and brand direction
  2. Register company, domain and immediately build scratch website
  3. Buy basic equipment and initiate product (recipe) development
  4. Initiate sampling (ie. dipping food into spicy honey while drinking whiskey) and community validation
  5. Finalize recipe and packaging
  6. Launch product on website
  7. Generate PR via community outreach and personal networks
  8. Explore additional sales / marketing avenues (both data driven and grassroots)
  9. Document everything

We also discussed and intend to:

-Research local commercial kitchen options

-Research and apply for Startup-NY 

In Summary:

After 1.5 hours of stuffing our mouths with pizza, day 1 is complete. We officially set up equity structure, devised roles aligned with our strengths and interests, and created our action plan for next steps.  

We're excited to share our journey with you, please comment to let us know if you think we missed any essential components of our starting plan!


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