Thursday, June 30, 2011

Bravo Bearded Brothers

Aside from the abundance of burnt orange (t.u.), Austin is a great city to live in.   Friendly people.  Highly educated population.  Beautiful hill country.  Relatively affordable cost of living.  Plenty of musicians coming through.  A plethora of outdoors and fitness-related activities.  Wide variety of restaurants and trendy shopping.
I had a great post-workout conversation yesterday with a fellow Austinite at Pure Austin.  His name is Chris, and he founded Bearded Brothers with his brother Caleb.  In their search for a nutritional, tasty snack on their outdoors adventures, they felt unsatisfied and felt there is room in the market for handmade, 100% organic energy bars.  And that was the impetus for creatiing their own company Bearded Brothers.  I had a taste of four of their products and enjoyed them.  If I come across them again, I'd certainly consider them as substitutes for the Clif Bars I usually buy.  In addition to being organic and packed with good nutrition, their energy bars are mostly raw (to preserve nutrition), gluten free, and vegan.  These aspects are less important to me but could be beneficial to the hoards of people who do look for those qualities (very trendy in Austin). 

Chris was kind and spent ~15 minutes talking to me about his business.  (As a b-school student and aspiring entrepreneur, of course I was going to be nosy!)  He told me about how the idea came about, their business model, what their operations are like, pricing, etc.  I've found that entrepreneurs are very open and willing to share their experiences and lessons learned.  Similar to those in the tech industry.  I asked myself why that is and the commonality is that these are innovators.  And that reminded me of a debate that my entrepreneurship professor, Dr. Gary Dushnitsky participated in recently.

The other interesting thing I found out from Chris was about Kickstarter.  Think of it as Kiva meets crowd giving.  I question the sustainability of some of this funding and believe they could get greater scale if it was a loan model vs. gift model.  However, I do applaud the idea and think that many aspiring entrepreneurs will and have benefited.

Check out Bearded Brothers and Kickstarter!

Funny and true
My b-school classmate Leetal shared this clever comparison of tech company org charts.  Haha!  I think there's some truth behind these...

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