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On March 8th, 2016 by admin

Interview with Owner and Founder, Sean Feeney, of The Lomas Brand

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Interviews with business owners

Sean Feeney is the owner and founder of The Lomas Brand. He has an unique story and it was great chatting with him over the phone about his company.

Yodel Networking (YN): How did the company get started?
Sean Feeney (SF): It started as an idea in my apartment in Solana Beach in 2015. I was doing corporate sales for eight years and having a clothing line was always something I wanted to do. Back in high school, I had a t-shirt company and I always loved clothing. Since I grew up skating, snowboarding, etc. it always summed up who I was. In March of 2015, I was unexpectedly laid off from my sales job. Instead of getting frustrated I looked at it as a fresh start at an opportunity to do something I'd always dreamt of.

YN: How did you start selling?
SF: Everything was online. It first started mainly with t-shirts.

YN: What was the next step?
SF: I launched in August of 2015. T-shirts were huge due to weather. Now that it's winter, I have expanded into sweatshirts, jackets and button downs.

YN: Would you say your main sales are online?
SF: Yes. However, I am now in a store. One thing I wanted to do was get in one store and learn the ropes. I got into Fowlers which is a shop in Cardiff. The hope is to expand into other stores, ideally locally in San Diego.

YN: Who is your target market?
SF: Anybody that enjoys the beach culture. I like simple balance but eye catching designs.

YN: Is it still just you who does everything?
SF: Yes. I do the photography, screen printing, marketing, books, etc. My whole goal was to start a clothing brand where I did everything behind it. I wanted it to be that the owner had his hand in everything.

YN: Is there any advice you want to tell people reading this in terms of being an entrepreneur?
SF: I want to influence people to do what they want to do. Instead of having to do the 8-5 corporate grind, they should feel able to create the life they want. I saved money during my sales job to be able to self-fund my new company.

For more information on The Lomas Brand, check out: http://thelomasbrand.com

*The tank I am wearing in the photo is awesome! It's thin material and perfect for hiking or heading to the beach!

On February 16th, 2016 by admin

Interview with David Burke of Great Lakes Co.

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Interviews with business owners

David Burke started Great Lakes Co a few years ago, out of his college dorm room. Since then, the company has grown into a full time gig for him and his friend. He was kind enough to do a phone chat with me to give me some insight into the backstory of the company.

Yodel Networking (YN): When did you start Great Lakes Co?
David Burke (DB): The idea started in 2012 through traveling and the need for something in Minnesota that people could connect with. Our (MN) lifestyle revolves around life at the lake. That can be: fishing, boundary waters, relaxing at the cabin, etc.

YN: Who started the company?
DB: Myself and my buddy Spencer. We have been friends since elementary school. He went to the University of Minnesota and I went to St. Thomas. I knew we grew up with the same lifestyle so I was happy to have him on board right away.

YN: What was your first product?
DB: We started with one design which is the american loon which is the flag design on our website.

YN: What was the budget to start?
DB: I put up $500 of my own money, ordered some shirts and had a Facebook page. It was very grassroots style. We sold out of our first 75 shirts within a couple weeks. Which was awesome!

YN: After your initial success, what direction did you take?
DB: It was the end of our senior year and we decided to launch a kickstarter. The concept was brand focused. It was our first go at manufacturing a product from the ground up. Our goal was $2,000 and we had designed a polo and belt. We raised $2,500 so we felt great about that.

YN: What's next?
DB: We are looking to hire people. Right now it's Spencer and I but we need more help; especially seasonally.

For more information on Great Lakes Co. check out: http://www.greatlakescollection.com/
Instagram: @greatlakesco

On August 31st, 2015 by admin

Ride MN interview with owner, Dustin Grice

Posted In:
Interviews with business owners

Half of my life, I have lived in Minnesota, the other half in California. Recently I saw some clothes and gear on Instagram called Ride MN that I really liked. The owner, Dustin Grice, was kind enough to do a phone interview with me about his products. Hope you all enjoy reading about his process as well as get excited about his products!

Dustin Grice is a multi-faceted man. He grew up doing BMX biking and went to college for web, software and design at Hennepin Teach in Minnesota. After school, Dustin worked for five years at a bike distributing company in Bloomington. Once that ride was done, he moved on to freelance which he is currently doing. 10405640_859431186494_51832212383877393_n

His goal in starting Ride MN was to create a brand for all the local riders to "ride and represent our favorite scene". That includes bikes, boards, moto, snowboarding, wake boarding, etc. The clothing is high quality and his website states "not only do we deliver some of the hottest new items printed on the best quality soft goods available, what really makes us special is that we have simplified the entire process & production of printing, selling, and shipping high quality soft goods for all of our brands with our fully automated solution for startups & small businesses."

Ride MN started with Dustin making 50 hats. He had no idea if they would sell or sit in his warehouse. To his excitement, they sold right away so he made 100 more. After his initial success with hats, he started producing shirts, hoodies, bags, sunglasses, stickers and more. They are fantastic products and I am excited to rep the gear both in Minnesota and California!

For more information on Ride MN, check out the links below:
Instagram: @RideMN

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