What's the big idea?
One evening Dennis stopped to pick up a couple of bananas for an early morning 50 mile group bike ride. On his way in he thought “I just can’t buy another _____ Bar.” Instead he bought some stuff and made some bars at home that night. When he gave them to riding pals, they’d say “You should make these and sell them.”
Eighteen months later we’ve discovered that ERG! Bars aren’t just an athlete’s bar, people love them with a cup of coffee too.
BTW: An “erg” is a scientific unit of power or work.
If you’re riding, hiking, skiing, or gonna do some work, you’ll need an ERG! Bar in your pocket.
Describe the nearest player in your field.
There are many “energy bars” on the market today. Have you ever tasted them? Read the labels? They taste like cardboard, look like plastic, have proprietary and unpronouncable ingredients plus preservatives for a longer shelf-life. Most have a fully-printed wrapper. What don’t they want you to see?
How are you different from that player?
People tell us that ERG! Bars taste great. They really like the clear packaging too, because they can actually see what they’re buying. ERG! Bars are made with real unprocessed food, with no preservatives or additives, and we do our best to use local sources for our ingredients, too.
How does this idea scale into a big business?
In our first eight months we have 50 enthusiastic dealers and established ERG! as a recognizable brand in western Michigan. In the first two months of 2013 we’ve developed relationships with two companies for state-wide distribution. You’ll soon be able to buy ERG! in your neighborhood.
Why are you the one to run with this idea?
With no experience in the food manufacturing and distribution business, we we’ve come a long way. It’s been an interesting eighteen months developing recipes and techniques, networking with friends, potential sellers, mentors and customers. Continuing the ERG! journey is a dream within our reach.
What is a $5,000 experiment you can do to move your idea forward?
$5,000 will help us move to the next level with some new equipment, upgraded financial software, trademark registration, outright purchase of a larger quantity of some ingredients, promotional materials, and with training someone to help us meet increased production demands.