Mighty Morphin Mouse

first_imgOkay, I’ll say it. The Scarab Mouse/Gamepad is seriously cool! I absolutely love the idea of having a mouse transform into a fully functional gamepad with a pretty admirable level of ergonomic detailing. The scarab works as a fully functional mouse for when you need to make those pesky office PPTs, but when it’s leisure time, snap the mouse open to reveal the XYAB controls and the joysticks on the inside. Pretty neat, huh! XYAB or WASD, this little product caters to all!Designer: Jan WinkelsSharePinShareFlipSharePocket22.4K SharesSharePinShareFlipSharePocket22.4K Shareslast_img

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A wallet with wag

first_imgJust imagine the reaction of the cashier at the grocery or your barista or the food delivery guy’s reaction when you pull the Zenlet out to pay them. It brings back the swagger with which most people would operate slider phones, but this concept puts its money where its mouth is, or rather money where its money is supposed to be… never mind. Zenlet is the world’s most outlandish wallet design and it honestly makes me want to ditch the cruddy folding leather wallet I’m currently using.The way it works is simple. Molded in an ABS/PC blend (what every plastic phone body is made of), the Zenlet slides to open and close, revealing a storage space on the inside that’s perfect for cards, notes, and even a few coins. The sliding interaction opens like a breeze and closes with a reassuring click that even goes as far as to waterproof the insides of the wallet. Another incredible bit of innovation is the Zenlet’s RFID Blocking feature. It prevents hackers from scanning the contents of your wallet and getting access to your car/bank information, giving your money and valuables complete, all-round security.It takes an extra bit of creativity to give the wallet such a bold makeover. We’ve seen loads of concepts of the same old wallet being made in different materials, or being simplified to just a clip or strap that holds your stuff in place, but nothing quite like the Zenlet. Not just a champion of innovative thinking, but also incredibly ahead in terms of functionality, Zenlet isn’t just a great wallet to own, it’s quite a case study for designers looking to shake the world up!Designers: Ian Hsieh & Donna ChangBuy Now: $50.00SharePinShareFlipSharePocket463 Shareslast_img read more

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Oregonians Love Their Pets Ranks Fourth for Pet Ownership

first_imgOregonians Love Their Pets, Ranks Fourth for Pet Ownership Share. Facebook E-Headlines Google+ By CBN 0 Tumblrcenter_img The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) recently released its U.S. Pet Ownership & Demographics Sourcebook, which revealed that Oregon ranks 4 for pet ownership with 63.6 percent of households owning a pet.In 2006, which was the last time the AVMA put together the sourcebook, Oregon again made the top 10 list of pet owners, ranking 3rd with 73.1 percent of households owning a pet. Oregon also ranked in the top 10 for cat ownership in 2011.The survey is conducted by the AVMA every five years and always includes a breakdown of pet ownership by state. The most recent survey, conducted in 2012 but based on December 31, 2011 numbers, reveals that the top 10 pet-owning states are: Vermont where 70.8 percent of households owned a pet, New Mexico with 67.6 percent, South Dakota with 65.6 percent, Oregon with 63.6 percent, Maine with 62.9 percent, Washington with 62.7 percent, Arkansas with 62.4 percent, West Virginia with 62.1 percent, Idaho with 62 percent, and Wyoming with 61.8 percent.The 10 states in 2011 with the lowest percentage of pet-owning households are: Rhode Island where 53 percent of households owned a pet, Minnesota with 53 percent, California with 52.9 percent, Maryland with 52.3 percent, Illinois with 51.8 percent, Nebraska with 51.3 percent, Utah with 51.2 percent, New Jersey with 50.7 percent, New York with 50.6 percent, and Massachusetts with 50.4 percent. The District of Columbia had a far lower rate of pet ownership at 21.9 percent.Top/Bottom Dog-Owning StatesThe Sourcebook reveals that the states with the most dog owners in 2011 are: Arkansas where 47.9 percent of households owned a dog, New Mexico with 46 percent, Kentucky with 45.9 percent, Missouri with 45.9 percent, West Virginia with 45.8 percent, Mississippi with 45.2 percent, Alabama with 44.1 percent, Tennessee with 44.1 percent, Texas with 44 percent, and Oklahoma with 43.2 percent.The bottom 10 states in 2011 for dog ownership are: Illinois where 32.4 percent of households owned a dog, New Jersey with 32.4 percent, Minnesota with 31.9 percent, Maryland with 30.8 percent, New Hampshire with 30.3 percent, Utah with 29.4 percent, Rhode Island with 29.3 percent, New York with 29 percent, Connecticut with 28.3 percent, and Massachusetts with 23.6 percent. The District of Columbia had far lower dog ownership than any state with 13.1 percent.Top/Bottom Cat-Owning StatesThe 2011 top 10 states with the most cat-owning households are: Vermont where 49.5 percent owned a cat, Maine with 46.4 percent, Oregon with 40.2 percent, South Dakota with 39.1 percent, Washington with 39 percent, West Virginia with 38.1 percent, Kentucky with 36.8 percent, Idaho with 34.6 percent, Indiana with 34.4 percent, and New Hampshire with 34.2 percent.Conversely, the bottom 10 states with the lowest rate of cat-owning households in 2011 are: California where 28.3 percent of households owned a cat, South Carolina with 27.8 percent, Rhode Island with 27.6 percent, Alabama with 27.4 percent, Florida with 27.3 percent, Georgia with 27.3 percent, Illinois with 26.3 percent, Louisiana with 25.9 percent, New Jersey with 25.3 percent, and Utah with 24.6 percent.  The District of Columbia, once again, had by far the lowest rate of cat ownership with 11.6 percent.“This report reveals a tremendous amount of information about pets and their owners across the country; what’s constant and what has changed. One of the most important parameters that we look at is how well pet owners are doing at keeping their pets healthy,” says Dr. Douglas G. Aspros, president of the AVMA.  “Unfortunately, the report reveals that fewer dogs and cats are seeing the veterinarian regularly, and that’s something that the AVMA and every companion animal veterinarian are concerned about. Pet owners across the country need to remember to bring their pets into the veterinarian – at least once a year – to maintain optimal health.”The report indicates that, between 2006 and 2011, the percentage of households that made no trips at all to the veterinarian increased by 8 percent for dog owners and a staggering 24 percent for cat owners.  Overall, about 81 percent of dog owning households made at least one visit to the veterinarian in 2011, down 1.7 percent from 2006. The decrease for cat owners was, once again, much higher, as only 55.1 percent of cat owners made at least one visit to the veterinarian in 2011, down 13.5 percent from 2006.The U.S. Pet Ownership and Demographics Sourcebook offers a great deal of information on pet ownership, trends and veterinary care. It’s available free to journalists and is for sale on the AVMA website.  For more information about the AVMA or to obtain a copy of the U.S. Pet Ownership and Demographics Sourcebook, visit www.avma.org. Pinterest on January 17, 2013 Email LinkedIn Twitterlast_img read more

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Love Lies and The Internet AG Warns of Online Romance Con

first_img 0 Google+ Email Twitter Facebook Tumblr Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum has a warning for people looking for love online. That soldier who’s been professing devotion via email may actually be a con artist looking for cash.Internet scammers posing as romantically minded members of the U.S. military are conning people out of millions of dollars. Complaints to local law enforcement about the soldier scam are increasing in frequency. In one recent case, a Hillsboro woman lost more than $750,000.Attorney General Rosenblum advises Oregonians to always maintain a healthy skepticism. The anonymity of the Internet means that you cannot be sure of the real name, age, marital status, nationality, or even gender of your new “heartthrob.”The con artists are often from foreign countries using untraceable email addresses. Once these “soldiers” make a connection, they begin asking for money for transportation, medical bills, cell phone and internet charges — even the cost of a wedding.They route accounts through numerous locations and utilize pay-per-hour Internet cyber cafes, which makes finding the scammer and recovering the money extremely difficult.To stay safe keep the following tips in mind:– Do not wire money to someone you have not met in person. Be wary of warp-speed proclamations of love, particularly if they are accompanied by pleas for cash.– Be suspicious if you never get to actually speak with the person on the phone or are told they will not receive letters in the mail. Legitimate servicemen and women serving overseas will often have an APO or FPO in their mailing address.– Do not send money or ship property to a third party or company, especially to parties or companies in an African country.If you think you have been scammed by an individual claiming to be a member of the U.S. military, contact the Oregon Department of Justice online at www.oregonconsumer.gov or call 1-877-877-9392. Share.center_img Love, Lies and The Internet: AG Warns of Online Romance Con By CBN on April 11, 2013 E-Headlines Pinterest LinkedInlast_img read more

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Bend Pet Express Celebrates

first_img on June 13, 2013 LinkedIn Share. Email Google+ Pinterest Facebook Twittercenter_img E-Headlines 0 By Jeff Spry, CBN Feature Writer Bend Pet Express Celebrates Offering healthy bags and cans of gourmet grub for Central Oregon’s plethora of pets, Bend Pet Express is celebrating its 20-year anniversary with a whole lotta drooling and purring.Manager Stephanie Clanin oversees both eastside and eastside Bend locations and has been with the company nearly six years.“What’s primarily important for us is good quality info for our customers so they can choose a better diet for their pets,” she said.  “We live in an area where we enjoy camping, biking, hiking and all sorts of outdoor pursuits and want to take our pets with us.”Bend Pet Express sells an impressive roster of premium pet foods of quality and distinction from sterling names like Champion Pet Foods, Acana, Solid Gold, Natures Variety, Natural Balance, Innova and Pure-Vita.“What’s exciting about Pure-Vita is that they’re part of the Nutri Source family, a third generation company based out of Minnesota,” said Clanin.  The latest trends in pet foods are grain-free and raw diets.  We try and focus on products that utilize human-grade, U.S.-sourced ingredients whenever possible.  What’s also trending in the grain-free lines are special formulas moving away from potatoes and introducing alternative starches like lentils, tapioca and peas.”Bend Pet Express began life in 1993 inside a humble yet legendary Bend garage owned by Julie Hunter.“Julie had a sick dog and she took it to a veterinarian and the vet told her to get that dog off the bad grocery store dog food,” Clanin explained.  “She did some research and found very few natural, premium pet foods other than the few sold at feed stores.  So she became a distributor for Pro Plan dog food and started selling it from her home and delivering it fresh to friends and customers.”Within three months Hunter’s business had outgrown the garage and she leased out a local warehouse.  Six months later she opened her first retail store in Sisters, selling pet supplies, grooming tools, livestock feed and dog and cat food of a higher quality than found at normal retail outlets.In 2001, after relocating from Sisters, Hunter celebrated the birth of her first Bend location on the Westside.  Soon after, in 2003, the eastside store was born.“Our loyal customer base are Bendites who are mindful of a healthy pet lifestyle for energy and recovery and who are searching for high-quality, reliable products, whose companies deliver not only a consistent food but are known for their integrity.”Not just satisfied with selling massive volumes of yummy dog and cat food to High Desert pet owners, Bend Pet Express takes its role as a community leader very seriously.“Because we’re a solid Bend company, born here and raised here, it’s vital to give back to the community via various charities and fundraisers.   We’ve recently opened a new food bank in conjunction with the Bend Spay and Neuter Project we’re really happy about.  We also do an annual charity fundraiser called Yappy Hour to benefit the Greyhounds Northwest organization.  We sponsor food drives for humane societies, offer donations to Bend-based humanitarian and vocational groups for fundraisers year round, anything assisting with our pets and their welfare.”Bend Pet Express also stocks a complete line of locally-produced leashes, collars and accessories from Spindrift and RuffWear.   They have small animal products for rodents, guinea pigs, domestic and wild birds as well as food cups and water bowls.“We sell a comprehensive assortment of calming agents and nutritional supplements like fish oils, coconut oil, glucosamine supplements for joint health and cutting edge multi-vitamins too.”And now with the main course out of the way, where’s dessert?“We’re so well known for our delicious lines of natural cookies, treats and biscuits, in bulk or by the box, without grain and baked with holistic botanicals.  And you can’t forget the amazing creative toys, balls and chew bones we carry.  We have such a fun time researching and testing and bringing in new lines of fun stuff.  Sometimes the cat toys are more exciting than the dog toys.”With so many happy tails wagging, it’s a wonder Clanin and her staff can keep up with it all.“What I like most about this job is that I really like my customers and my coworkers.  I get to come into work and play with people’s dogs all day long.  Not bad.  We get a great workout moving and stocking products and carrying out for customers and learning from them.  That sharing of knowledge is so important.”Clanin loves when customers come in and ask questions and she encourages them to learn more about their pets’ habits and training.“There’s so many pets who go through the same things we as humans go through, like stress, anxiety, allergies and digestive problems and we try to help the pet parents to make informed decisions.  We still see growth within the community, this is our home, and we’ll definitely still be here in another twenty years.”Bend Pet Express is located at 133 SW Century Drive and 420 NW Windy Knolls in Bend across from Costco.www.bendpetexpress.com541-385-5298 Tumblrlast_img read more

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Executive Chef Joe Kim Becomes Partner in 5 Fusion and Sushi Bar

first_img Pinterest By CBN Chef Kim has been leading the 5 Fusion culinary mission and vision for the last two years, garnering multiple awards for his innovative cuisine along the way.  Along with Lilian Chu, Chef Kim is a strong supporter of the Central Oregon community, and plans to continue the tradition of the 5 Fusion charity dinners and other philanthropic pursuits. Twitter Tumblr Facebook 0 Executive Chef Joe Kim has purchased an ownership stake from Howie Long, who is moving on from 5 Fusion to his other business pursuits. Five Fusion is located at 821 NW Wall. For more information, please call 541-323-2328 or visit the website at www.5fusion.com.center_img Share. on July 30, 2013 Google+ Executive Chef Joe Kim Becomes Partner in 5 Fusion and Sushi Bar E-Headlines Email LinkedInlast_img read more

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Central Oregon Families Businesses Ready to March for Babies

first_img (Photo courtesy of March of Dimes)On Saturday, April 23, at River Bend Park in Bend, hundreds of families and business leaders will join together in the March of Dimes annual March for Babies–the nation’s oldest walk fundraiser honoring babies born healthy and those who need help to survive and thrive.The Whitney family is one of many mission affected families walking this year. Kirk and Jay Whitney were looking forward to starting their family Elliot was born five weeks too soon, via C-section. At only 35 weeks gestation, Elliot came into the world struggling to breath. For the next 12 days Elliot was in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at St Charles Hospital, struggling with Respiratory Distress Syndrome.He was given surfactant therapy, which he responded very well to, and eventually was allowed to go home. Elliot is now a healthy active three-year-old, who is looking forward with his parents to the birth of his little brother. Their story of premature birth has a happy ending, and the family is sharing it to raise awareness for what is the number one killer of babies. They want to promote a story of hope and also stress the need for more research to find the causes and solutions for early deliveries like theirs.Joining the Whitney family, and so many others who know the distress of premature birth or birth defects, are local business, including Kendall Auto, MODA Health, Lifewise Health Systems, St. Charles Medical Center, and Pacific Source Health Plans.Registration begins at 8am with the 5k walk kicking off at 9:00 a.m. Participation in March for Babies will provide a memorable and rewarding experience for the whole family including the Kids’ Clinic Workshop hosted by Home Depot and a lunch provided by MODA Health. Join the walk and begin fundraising today at www.marchforbabies.org.Funds raised by March for Babies in Oregon and SW Washington help support prenatal wellness programs, research grants, information for families experiencing a newborn intensive care unit (NICU) hospitalization and advocacy efforts for stronger, healthier babies. Premature birth is the most urgent infant health problem in the U.S. today. It affects nearly half a million babies each year, including 4,264 in Oregon.For more than 75 years, moms and babies have benefited from March of Dimes research, education, vaccines, and breakthroughs. Find out how you can help raise funds to prevent premature birth and birth defects by walking in March for Babies at marchforbabies.org. Locally March for Babies is sponsored by First Tech Federal Credit Union, Big 5, Kendall Auto, Western Title & Escrow, and SELCO Solutions. The 2016 March for Babies is sponsored nationally by the March of Dimes number one corporate supporter Kmart, Famous Footwear, Macy’s, Cigna, United Airlines and Mission Pharmacal.Contact Info:Judy C Smith, Community Director541-225-5024, jsmith@marchofdimes.orgAimee Corey, Executive Director of Market Development541-225-5023, acorey@marchofdimes.org 0 Facebook on March 31, 2016 Google+ E-Headlines Central Oregon Families & Businesses Ready to March for Babies LinkedIncenter_img Share. Twitter Pinterest By CBN Tumblr Emaillast_img read more

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New Standards for Western Juniper Wood Boost Market Potential for Invasive Tree

first_img on April 10, 2018 Pinterest New Standards for Western Juniper Wood Boost Market Potential for Invasive Tree LinkedIn By Nick Houtman (Photo above” Byrne Miyamoto testing a western juniper sample | Courtesy of OSU Forest Products Lab)Oregon State University scientists have concluded an exhaustive series of tests on western juniper lumber and opened the door to commercial wood markets for an invasive tree that has spread widely across central and eastern Oregon and other parts of the Great Basin.The test results were accepted in February by the American Lumber Standards Committee, a nonprofit organization whose accreditation program forms the basis for the sale of most softwood lumber sold in North America. Acceptance means that, for the first time, western juniper will be listed in the National Design Specification for Wood Construction, the handbook used by engineers and buyers to select wood for applications from sign posts to houses. Increased use of western juniper could lead to new markets for the trees that are being cut to restore sagebrush and rangelands in the West.The results were published today in the journal Wood and Fiber Science.“I’ve gotten calls from people in transportation departments who wanted to use western juniper for sign posts or guard-rail blocks,” said Scott Leavengood, director of the Oregon Wood Innovation Center at Oregon State. “But when they checked the design specification book, they’d discover that western juniper isn’t even mentioned, so they couldn’t use it. That’s because the testing hadn’t been done.”Western juniper occupied about 1.5 million acres in Oregon in 1900 but has expanded to nearly 10 million acres today, said Dylan Kruse of Sustainable Northwest, a nonprofit organization that helped to coordinate the tests. As the tree invaded sagebrush lands, it depleted groundwater and changed the hydrology of watersheds, drying up springs and altering plant communities.Despite the potential of an increasing supply, the lack of design standards meant that wood milled from the tree had limited commercial use. “Western juniper has been the black sheep of the wood products industry,” said Kruse. “Our goal is to get it on people’s radar. This could be a great cottage industry for rural Oregon.”Recent efforts to spur a western juniper wood products industry stem from the creation of the Western Juniper Alliance in 2013. Members of the alliance, including Kruse, found that the wood had not gone through the same rigorous testing procedures as other softwoods such as Douglas fir, hemlock, ponderosa pine and western redcedar.So, starting in 2015, Byrne Miyamoto, an Oregon State master’s student, began testing western juniper wood under the direction of Arijit Sinha, professor of renewable materials in the College of Forestry. “The biggest challenge was going through the wood to find pieces that had straight grain, no knots or defects and no visible bark,” said Miyamoto, who grew up in Ventura, California. “Western juniper tends to have a twisted, gnarly grain, so in an 8-foot post, you might only find 1 foot of wood that met the testing specifications.”In conducting four different tests specified by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), Miyamoto created more than 950 blocks of wood, some as small as two inches on a side. He subjected samples to tests for bending, compression, shear strength (force applied in the same direction as the grain) and durability. He evaluated the performance of wood dried to about 12 percent moisture as well as “green” samples that had not been dried.Once he had the test results, Miyamoto calculated specifications for different grades of lumber, such as select structural, No. 1 or utility. “The ASTM standards are conservative because the goal is to protect public safety,” he said. “So people using these materials can be assured that even the weakest 2×4 stud or 4×4 post in a specific grade will have the strength for the intended use.”It’s unlikely that consumers will find 2x4s made of western juniper at their local lumber yard, Miyamoto added, but since the wood is colorful and rot resistant, it has potential for siding, decking, garden boxes and other outdoor applications. Western juniper bends more easily under pressure than other softwoods but is also stronger under compression than most, a quality likely related to the cellular properties of the growing tree. That makes the wood particularly useful for a structural component known as a sill plate, which typically supports the weight of a building and is in contact with the foundation.Wood for the tests came from three Oregon counties (Lake, Crook and Harney) as well as Modoc County in California and Owyhee County in southwest Idaho.In addition to Miyamoto’s tests, an undergraduate in Sinha’s lab conducted tests of the ability of western juniper to hold metal and wood structural connections to other building components. Hayley Morris, a student in the Oregon State University Honors College, was the lead author of a paper in Wood and Fiber Science describing those test results.Support for the testing was provided by Sustainable Northwest, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Oregon Department of Transportation and Business Oregon. Twitter Google+center_img E-Headlines Tumblr Facebook Share. Email 0last_img read more

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The Challenges of Building your own Clothing Company

first_img Twitter on March 1, 2019 Share. The Challenges of Building your own Clothing Company Facebook A clothing line business is one of the major business ventures that has a high income. The notion behind this argument is based on the fact that with the desire to be trendy, many people are willing to go the extra mile, and chuck that extra dollar to rock the latest outfits. However, just like any other business out there, owning a clothing line has its fair share of challenges, especially when it comes to starting the business from scratch. The following are some of the most common challenges that most business owners will encounter when starting a clothing line business.CapitalCapital is the most important asset that any business-oriented individual should have before starting or operating a clothing line. The notion behind this argument is based on the fact that if you don’t have sufficient capital to manage your business, there is a high possibility that it will eventually collapse. Capital should not only be used to start the business, but it should also be used to manage it, and pay suppliers and the employees as well. Most people usually have the ideology that once the clothing line has been set up, money will start trickling in. This is not the case. You should always ensure that you have a formidable amount of money that can oversee your tribulations when the demand for your clothes goes down, or when competition becomes stiff.Cost of ProductionThe cost of production is the main point of concern for anyone who intends to buy raw materials and assemble them into complete clothes. Additionally, new business start-ups may find this cost of production unbearable especially when factors such as the assembling and transportation costs are to be considered. Moreover, inflation has made the cost of production even worse, with the people most affected been the business owners.Distribution ChallengesThough many business owners may design and produce their clothes, the distribution of the clothes is another challenge altogether. Most clothing brands especially new brands usually encounter difficulties when it comes to marketing and distributing their clothes. The notion behind this argument is based on the fact that most clothes store will go after a renowned brand rather than a new brand. It, therefore, takes more than just marketing and good tongue to get your clothes out there in public and have the public yearn for more. The good thing, however, is the fact that if it becomes hard to distribute the clothes to individuals or shops, business owners can attend a list of fashion trade shows and advertise their attire. It is therefore advisable to always mark your calendars and be on the know when such events are bound to happen.CompetitionCompetition in the clothing industry is stiff and unrelenting, and it has been made more severe due to the influx of shows that promote fashion. As a new business venture, most newbies may find it hard to cope with this type of competition, hence finding themselves out of the market unwillingly. As a way of avoiding this type of barrier, new entrants may employ smart marketing strategies such as the use of social media, promotional strategy, and selling or distributing their clothes at cheaper or affordable prices. Promotional strategies can be such as buy one get one free promotion or the use of referral coupons. By using such techniques, business owners can be able to get a large base of future potential clients.Lack of VarietyA lack of variety is a significant issue for any new entrant into the clothing industry. This underlying issue is usually made worse by the presence of highly-established brands which have more than just a single style or outfit. To keep a clothing brand on its feet, designers and business owners must work hand in hand to determine the best designs as well as produce as many designs as possible. Though some designers may run into design problems, and out of ideas, it is always advisable to have various approaches that can be implemented and used accordingly, because a single design is a recipe for failure.Though only a few challenges have been listed, they are other challenges that different aspiring business-minded people may encounter. However, Sewport CEO Boris Hodakel believes that the way at which business owners overcome these challenges, is what determines the success or failure of the business in question. It is therefore advisable for clothing business owners to always plan ahead, attend various fashion shows, and have a clear picture of what is to be expected just in case their plans take an unexpected turn. 0 By CBNcenter_img LinkedIn Pinterest Google+ E-Headlines Tumblr Emaillast_img read more

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This NYC Startup Just Raised 675M To Let You Collect Message and

first_imgEmojis may have come to center stage over the past few years, but they are rarely viewed as a collectible or piece of art.  Quidd strives to be the next evolution of the emoji revolution.  The has built an app for collecting and digital stickers, cards, and toys that includes licensed digital items that can evoke a sense of nostalgia with digital collectibles from some of your favorites including Star Trek and Back to the Future.  It offers a marketplace and additional opportunities for revenue generation for businesses that have strong followings.AlleyWatch chatted with CEO and Founder Michael Bramlage about the startup and how they raised their first round of funding.Who were your investors and how much did you raise? We raised $6.75M in Seed funding from strategic Angel investors.Tell us about your product or service.Quidd is an app to collect and trade digital stickers, digital cards, and digital toys. It’s a little bit like a digital toy store on your phone. It might sound silly, but consider the billions of people that send emojis and digital stickers in chat messages each day. We want to serve that market with really high-end, limited-edition emoji, and sticker content, almost treating it like art to be curated and collected.What inspired you to start the company?My cofounder and I started Quidd out of both a conviction and a challenge.We have this conviction that collecting — the act of obsessing over your favorite show, buying officially-licensed products from that show, completing sets of those products, hanging out and discussing it with like-minded fans, and showing off your special items — is universal. Everyone collects something.Then we had this challenge. Could we take this universal behavior and make the entire experience digital? Could it be real and live entirely on an app in the palm of your hand? Could the itch to own bits and pieces of the things you love be scratched more effectively digitally than physically? It turns out the answer is yes.How is it different?70% of Quidd users have never collected physical stickers, cards, or toys before they purchased their first digital collectible in the app. And this includes a disproportionate number of Millennial females. What sets us apart is we’ve built this experience that allows us to tap into the latent need of super-fans, and not just the stereotypical adult male trading card or action figure collector. The app and platform is proving that everyone — young, old, male, female — has an inner geek just waiting to come out.Michael BramlageWhat market you are targeting and how big is it? Since Quidd sells digital stickers, digital cards, and digital toys, it sits at the intersection of a few rather large markets.By volume, emojis and stickers is a super-large market. Literally billions of people send or receive billions of texts and chat messages each day contains emojis and stickers. But few chat apps have figured out how to monetize this important content.By revenue, the physical toy industry is mammoth. It’s more than $80B in global retail sales. What if just a sliver of that goes digital? What if today’s kids who are growing up preferring digital to physical experiences, want to carry around their entire toy collection with them in an app on their phone in the future? These are the questions we’re asking and the markets we’re targeting.What’s your business model?Quidd is both a platform and marketplace, enabling publishers like Cryptozoic and Funko — makers of the incredibly popular physical Pop! figures — to digitize their physical products and sell them as digital collectibles. Consumers, who love Rick And Morty or Bob’s Burgers or Star Trek, spend real money paying for or real time trading for these digital items.How has your experience with Topps influenced the development of this venture?It helped us realize we were onto something and there was a market there.What was the funding process like?Good. We’re very fortunate to have the support from a great group of investors.What are the biggest challenges that you faced while raising capital?Probably two things.First is the silliness of it. We’re not curing cancer. We’re helping millennial super-fans engage with the shows they obsess over and love, like Rick And Morty. We’re helping them meet like-minded fans. And we’re helping them to geek out and really go down the rabbit hole. It’s weird and silly, but also wonderful. It took a couple attempts for folks to realize that a serious, healthy business could exist wrapped in this fun, silly veneer.Second is the newness of it. Nobody is really doing this at the scale and ambition of Quidd. It’s cliche, but we believe we’re defining a category and we’re proving that we’re not too early. The pitch isn’t and never was ‘we’re Uber for X’ and we really like that.What factors about your business led your investors to write the check?If I had to settle on one factor, it would be the fact that my co-founder and I had built a large, revenue-generating apps business prior to starting this company. That conviction and that “in the trenches” experience reduces a lot of the perceived risk.What are the milestones you plan to achieve in the next six months? There will be some very exciting new content launching on Quidd in the next couple of quarters. But that’s all I can share.What advice can you offer companies in New York that do not have a fresh injection of capital in the bank?Keep going. It’s that simple.Where do you see the company going now over the near term?We have a product roadmap that will take at least half a decade to realize. In the near future we plan to continue putting our heads down and executing to realize our vision.Where is your favorite bar in the city for an after work drink?68 Jay St. Bar in DUMBO, Brooklyn.PREVIOUS POSTNEXT POST This NYC Startup Just Raised $6.75M To Let You Collect, Message and Trade TheseMarch 10, 2017 by AlleyWatch 462SHARESFacebookTwitterLinkedin Filed Under: #NYCTech, AlleyTalk, Angel/Seed, Funded in the Alley, Funded in the Alley, Funding, Funding News, Interviews, Startupslast_img read more

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