Fast-growing dog treat business Doggielicious is launching a ‘crowdfunding’ initiative as it prepares to expand into new premises and employ extra staff.
Crowdfunding is an online phenomenon which sees investors pledge their financial support for new products and projects. Doggielicious founder Alex Kennedy has created a page on leading online direct financing platform Indiegogo as she bids to raise £30,000 to fund her expansion plans.
Isle of Man Company Doggielicious was launched in 2011 with the ambition of creating high quality dog treats bursting with natural and fresh ingredients, sourced locally where ever possible. From humble beginnings of baking treats for her own dog Amber and her friends’ pets, Alex now supplies shops and customers all over the world.
Her range includes treats which boast ingredients like Isle of Man Creameries Manx cheese, Laxey Glen Mills Manx flour, Ratcliffe’s Manx honey and Gelling’s free range Manx eggs. She also includes ingredients such as ginger and garlic, which have been shown to be beneficial to canine health.
Doggielicious now needs new premises, including a commercial kitchen, and new employees to continue meeting existing demand, and allow for expansion into new markets.
Indiegogo allows people to pledge cash towards the project in exchange for a variety of rewards, ranging from a hamper of Doggielicious goodies to a Master Class in the Doggielicious bakery making your own dog treats with Alex. The £30,000 target must be reached in just 60 days.
Alex explained: ‘I decided to create my own dog treats after realising I couldn’t even pronounce the names of some of the unnecessary ingredients found in mass-produced treats. I spoke to local suppliers and dog owners before designing a range of treats using the freshest and most natural ingredients, sourcing as many as possible from near my home in the Isle of Man, and baking them myself in my own kitchen.
‘Just like me, many dog owners don’t want to feed their pets treats they couldn’t trust and the business quickly took off. My first sales came at a Farmers’ Market on a cold and windy day and now I am receiving orders through my website from dog owners all over the world.
‘I am also supplying shops and stores, including Shoprite here in the Isle of Man.’
She added: ‘I am delighted there has been a steady increase in demand, but I have now reached a point where I need to invest in new premises, a commercial kitchen, and in staffing, to meet that demand and, importantly for the business, explore new opportunities.
‘A number of UK stores have been in touch to discuss stocking Doggielicious products, and there have been inquiries from around the globe. Clearly, there is a great scope for further growth, but I need the facilities and people in place first.’
Alex has chosen Indiegogo as her crowdfunding platform. Since its launch in 2008, Indiegogo has seen millions of people pledge millions of dollars to fund thousands of projects in more than 220 countries and territories. It is a platform and resource for people to attract direct funding for all sizes of projects, including films, games, music, art, design and technology, and is visited by nine million people every month. The creator retains control and responsibility for the project, which must meet strict Indiegogo guidelines.
She explained: ‘After extensive research I decided crowdfunding was the best way forward, as Doggielicious is a dream I have built up from the ground with passion and conviction. I believe there are many people out there who share my vision of healthy, high quality dog treats which taste delicious and are good for our dogs, and I would like to get them involved.
‘With Indiegogo people can pledge as little as £10 and there are rewards offered for all levels of contribution. I hope dog lovers, Isle of Man residents and everyone who understands my vision will get involved, and share the Doggielicious message.’
The Doggielicious Indiegog initiative goes live on July 22nd.To find out more visit http://igg.me/at/doggielicious