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The Simple Cup as a Small Business

it's Tuesday // October 28th, 2014

It’s been almost a year since The Simple Cup idea was born and with the support of some truly amazing people, I’ve been able to make that idea a reality. Still being in it’s early stages, I’ve had a good chance to really think about where I see and hope The Simple Cup will go. It’s time to announce that we’ve made some structure changes, and finally have a definite business foundation.

When I initially wrote The Simple Cup business plan, I was focusing my energies on the brand, the design and consumer experience, and not focusing my energies entirely on how the behind-the-scenes structure would work. After doing some research, I assumed The Simple Cup was a nonprofit, simply because no profit is really being made and we’re helping people in need.

Now that I’ve had time to look at The Simple Cup from a far and speak to others about it, I’m realizing The Simple Cup is a small business, rather than a nonprofit. It is simply a small business that gives 75% of it’s retail sales. I’m selling products, that I get to choose, and the 25% I am not donating, I use to maintain my own operation.

I want to run a small business that inspires people to purchase products and know that they are receiving high quality, small batch and locally made products. By purchasing Simple Cup products, they, themselves are donating to help people in need. The Simple Cup is just a doorway that allows them to act on a desire to help others. Help others in need and help the local economy.

How The Simple Cup acts as a small business.

  • I control, curate and seek out all of the products The Simple Cup sells.
  • I establish partners and purchase their products at a wholesale price.
  • I have one employee (myself) and I am the sole owner.
  • I do not have a board of advisors or any investors that oversee what I do.
  • I eventually hope to have a brick + mortar store front.
  • I don’t rely on donations, but rather a percentage of sales (25%) and personal funds to cover any expenses.

Why the change of heart?

I held off on getting a nonprofit status because it was an expensive and daunting process. I wanted to make sure that’s exactly the direction I wanted to head. And it ended up not being the direction I wanted to head. I want people to partner with me because they are inspired by what I’m doing as a business and not because I can offer a tax write off.

Also, being as small of a business as The Simple Cup is, I remain in control of everything. I get to make all of the marketing decisions, curate all of the products I sell and maintain where the design direction goes.

With the help, and withstanding consulting of some amazing people, I’ve been able to get started, sustain the business thus far, and still give 75% of every sale, as I originally intended.

Still being extremely new at this, and obtaining most of my knowledge from research, friends and family, I would love any advice you might have to offer! This whole adventure has been exciting, and at times confusing. I’ve learned so much and have a tiny business that I absolutely love. I look forward to what the future holds for The Simple Cup.

Feel free to reply to this post with any questions, concerns or helpful advice you may have!

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3 comments on “The Simple Cup as a Small Business

  1. Pingback: Simple Mondays, A simple blog.

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