Industry: Alcohol Beverage
Founding Student Name(s): Kaitlyn Lo
Brief Description of Solution: Premium, great-tasting wine in the convenience of a can.
Funding Dollars: N/A
What led you to launch this venture? My co-founder and I both grew up in California where wine has always been a big part of our lives. Over the past several years, we’ve seen a lot of alcohol companies transition to cans (seltzers, cocktails, etc.) for many reasons such as being more portable, convenient, and sustainable. However, we failed to find a canned wine that held up to the quality of wine we wanted to drink, so we set out to create a premium canned wine that actually tastes good.
What has been your biggest accomplishment so far with venture? Within one year of our initial launch, we sold out of our first vintages of the Chardonnay and Pinot Noir and are now on our second vintage of each!
How has your MBA program helped you further this startup venture? Through the Zell Lurie Institute at Michigan Ross, there were a lot of great resources that helped us early on in our venture, from funding from the Zell Founders Fund to assistance from the Michigan Law Clinic. The Michigan Ross MBA also provides a lot of opportunities for hands-on classwork, such as with MAP, where I was able to work on a U.S. marketing strategy for a CBD skincare company based in Israel.
What founder or entrepreneur inspired you to start your own entrepreneurial journey? How did he or she prove motivational to you? My co-founder Jessica really inspired me to follow this journey. She is very tenacious and hard-working and keeps our whole team motivated each day. For her, no task is too small and she’s gone to incredible lengths for our company and team which I find really inspiring.
Which MBA class has been most valuable in building your startup and what was the biggest lesson you gained from it? Digital Marketing was an incredibly valuable class that helped build our startup. We did a Google Ads simulation throughout the course which taught me the importance of continually testing different copies and creatives.
What professor made a significant contribution to your plans and why? N/A
What is your long-term goal with your startup? Our goal is to be the nation’s number one selling premium canned wine.
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