Spotlight Interview: Dave Mattson

Dave Mattson - Sandler Systems, Inc

Dave talks about innovation, learning from customers, and success in sales.

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Spotlight Interview: David Allen

David Allen - Getting Things Done

David talks about GTD and how it can help you, your business, and your success.

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Spotlight Interview: Gordon Logan

Gordon Logan - Sport Clips

Gordon talks about Sport Clips and the success of the franchise model he built.

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Jul8

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Brandon Peele
EVR1
Founder

The team over at EVR1 makes inspired accessories, crafted using the most sustainable methods, and containing a tiny chip that holds’ the world’s wisdom. Their customers are folks who enjoy knowing they have the Library of Alexandria with them, who connect with human excellence in all its forms – poetry, philosophy, science, literature, religion. Their goal is to reconnect humanity with the long arc of its progress, to remystify our everyday lives. If you took a knife and skimmed the top off the internet, this would be the few gigabytes that constitute the EVR1 Canon – this selection includes the entire website of Wikipedia, the Eastern and Western literary canons, the world’s major religious texts, how-to manuals, and recent essays from leading thinkers on the nature of reality.

MO: What inspired to you launch EVR1?

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Jun18

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Dana Edmonds
Creation Hotcomb Designs
CEO & Creative Director

Creation Hotcomb Design is a graphic & web design studio based in Montreal, working globally.

They are an international Web & Graphic Design Studio that creates clean, cutting-edge, professional and custom designs for clients.

Some of their impressive clients have included ELLE Quebec, United Nations, Esprit, Mega Bloks, La Vie en Rose, MUHC and recently Hans Koechling the image is to name a few.

MO: Can you elaborate on how a disagreement with a Graphic Design Professor was the springboard for leaving the Graphic Design program and ultimately launching your own business?

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Jun5

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Josh Weiss
Bluegala
Founder & President

Josh Weiss is the Founder and President of Bluegala, an online retailer of dresses for social occasions including prom dresses, evening dresses, cocktail dresses, and day dresses. Previously, he worked for Lehman Brothers as a High Yield Credit Research Analyst.

Josh also serves as the Chief Strategic Officer for alight.com, an online retailer of plus size clothing, and is the President and Founder of GetMyDress.com (currently in beta), the first website to quickly and easily connect internet shoppers with brick and mortar stores to locate hard to find dresses.

MO: Can you talk about your journey from being an analyst at Lehman Brothers to launching becoming an online retailer for formal dresses?

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May22

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Betsy Johnson
SwimZip
Founder

Betsy Johnson is the Founder and President of SwimZip. Growing up Betsy always loved fashion and could spend hours shopping and getting dressed. She was diagnosed with skin cancer at the age of 26 and has combined her passion for designing clothes and her personal battle with skin cancer to create SwimZip

SwimZip is stylish UV 50+ swimwear for babies, toddlers, and children. Our full-length zipper swimwear is uniquely designed allowing for easy-on, easy-off UV protection for children. The no-pinch zipper flap, tagless neck, zipper garage around the neck, and flat-lock stitching make wearing the swimwear comfy! SwimZip’s material is chlorine resistant too! Our swimwear protects young children from harmful UV rays and makes stylish UPF protection you can wear anywhere!

Gus: What were you doing before launching SwimZip? How did your background and experience help contribute to the vision and growth of the company?

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May16

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Emily Gimmel
GRACESHIP
Founder & Creative Director

Emily Gimmel is no stranger to style and trendsetting. The Founder and Creative Director for GRACESHIP spent 10 years working with some of the most famous and influential people on the planet. An entertainment TV reporter and personality, Emily’s has appeared on billboards in Times Square, The View, Entertainment Tonight, CNN, US Weekly, InTouch Weekly, SOAPnet, The Speed Channel, 702.tv and reported for a number of major local TV stations. An expert in entertainment and lifestyle coverage, Emily developed a keen eye for style by covering the biggest fashion and culture events in the world. She’s interviewed pop culture icons such as Eva Longoria, Kim Kardashian, Jeremy Piven, Donald Trump, T.I., and James Denton, just to name a few.

Today Emily is the chief architect behind GRACESHIP’s fresh, innovative product line. The brand is mastering the women’s computer bag market with fashionable and functional computer bags catering to professional women. Emily is passionate about creating bold, yet refined pieces that complement the lifestyle of today’s modern females. She believes the key to great design lies within the balance of simplicity and the subtle art of detail with her line of chic and stylish laptop bags designed exclusively for women combining the specs of a laptop bag with the swank of a purse.

MO: What inspired you to launch GRACESHIP?

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May14

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Avi Shenkar
BLO/OUT Blow Dry Bar
Founder & CEO

The Philadelphia area’s first and best Blow Dry Bar as designated by Philadelphia Style Magazine in July of 2012.

BLO/OUT Blow Dry Bar has taken the Philadelphia area’s media by storm with a 2 page spread in Philadelphia Style Magazine as well as coverage by Philadelphia Weekly, CNN, The Philadelphia Inquirer many more.

Rapid social media growth and word of mouth that spread like wildfire have allowed BLO/OUT to expand to 2 locations in just 8 months with 4 more in the works including a partnership with PREIT bringing BLO/OUT to local area malls as well as Caesars Pier Shops in Atlantic City.

MO: Can you tell us a bit about yourself and what inspired you to launch BLO/OUT Blow Dry Bar?

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May8

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Charlotte & Andrew Mills
Nephria Jade
Directors

Charlotte and Andrew Mills are the directors of Nephria.

Nephria Jade beauty products are sourced from a single and unique Nephrite Jade mine in South Korea (hence the name – Nephria). All products are manufactured, packaged and distributed under the direction of Charlotte and Andrew to a worldwide market.

MO: How did you come up with the concept of basing a beauty product line around a jade mine?

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May4

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Susan Akbarpour
Mavatar
Co-Founder

A visionary and globally focused executive and entrepreneur, Susan Akbarpour has 20 years of hands-on experience in building successful and innovative businesses in media, management consulting and investment.

As a journalist, editor, publisher, businesswoman, investor, social entrepreneur & political fundraiser, Susan has received multiple media, community and business awards and has been a speaker at various conferences and frequently featured by mainstream media outlets.

Susan co-founded Mavatar along with Dr. Brom Mahbod, former Oracle VP of e-business platform in January 2011. Brom runs the company as the CEO, while Susan is serving as the company’s president.

MO: What inspired you to launch Mavatar?

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Apr25

Greg.Edson
Greg Edson
Brollytime
President

Brollytime Inc is an innovative product development company started in 2012 that produces the Brolly rain umbrella, the first rain umbrella that enables you to text/email in the rain. At Brollytime Inc., we enjoy transforming everyday products into cutting edge inventions that broaden peoples’ horizons.

Greg Edson started Brollytime Inc in 2012 to help transform an industry that has experienced a standstill in innovation. Prior to founding Brollytime Inc., Greg worked for Fortune 500 advertising and online marketing firms in New York City and Chicago. Greg is very passionate about finding new and unique opportunities and taking them from ideas to finished products/services.

MO: How did you come up with the concept for Brollytime?

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Mar4

Swirl
Hilmi Ozguc
Swirl
Founder

Hilmi Ozguc founded Swirl with the goal of revolutionizing the retail shopping experience by making in-store shopping more inspiring and productive through the use of mobile technology. He has been a successful entrepreneur and executive in the software industry for the past 20 years, having created groundbreaking companies that realize the Internet’s potential as a global communications and marketing vehicle. Hilmi previously founded Maven Networks, an early leader in Internet video, which was acquired by Yahoo! in 2008 and today powers the video content and advertising infrastructure for the world’s largest network of Internet media properties.

Swirl is a fast-growing tech startup that is harnessing the power of mobile and social technologies to reignite consumers’ love of in-store shopping. The company is led by an accomplished entrepreneurial team with deep consumer mobile, digital media, social marketing and e-commerce experience. Swirl is backed by top-tier investors including Softbank Capital, General Catalyst and Longworth Venture Partners.

MO: How did you come up with the concept for Swirl?

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Jan12

Talia Goldfarb
Talia Bahr Goldfarb

Two sisters, Talia Bahr Goldfarb, a mom and social worker, and Danielle Bahr Eason, a mom and retail industry veteran, joined forces to invent Myself Belts, the belt kids can fasten themselves.

Myself Belts help make a child’s (and parent’s!) school day a little easier and provide children with an “I did it by myself!” moment. Mom-invented, this is a must-have fashionable and functional patented children’s accessory for kids ages 2-12. Myself Belts promote independence and boost self-esteem by allowing children to easily fasten and unfasten their belt on their own. No more falling pants and a frustrating problem has been solved for parent, child and teacher.

Gus: How did you come up with the concept for Myself Belts? How have you and your sister combined your backgrounds, experience and vision to create Myself Belts?

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