Oct.24, Kelowna B.C.
In business as in life, timing is everything. Creating a new product is one thing, but creating a buzz and customer purchase and sell-through is another. In the grocery world, it can take years to establish your brand, customer loyalty and recognition, but for the team behind Simp's Serious Caesar Mix, the non-stop hustle and persistence has just landed them their biggest win to date:The Pattison Group.
"One of our natural tendencies as entrepreneurs is when we come up with an idea, to immediately begin to think about all the reasons that it won't fly" says Simp's Chief Imagination Officer Gerry Jobe, "The three of us made a pact to stop doing that as a company and adopted the motto of 'No excuses, No speed bumps' and I attribute that fearlessness and confidence to this latest win."
The initial conversation with the Pattison Group began at a private function in July, where Simp's C.E.O. Richard Nixon got some one on one time with Jim Pattison. "He was very gracious with his time and willingness to lend me an ear," says Nixon. "The man is a giant in the grocery space and for him to take the time out to offer me insight alone was incredibly valuable and appreciated."
The day after that brief encounter, the team at Simp's discovered that conversation had obviously made an impact. Simp's V.P. of Production Dave Simpson was up early when the phone rang, "I answered and it was a representative from Save On Foods telling me that she was going to step me through getting our products listed with the group if I had the time...I of course had the time."
"My phone started lighting up with texts from Dave and Richard," Says Jobe, "I was excited to learn we were getting listed in Penticton, then they responded that we were getting listed in the entire system and I had to sit down."
In the midst of construction and a move into their newly completed facility, it took a while for the team to finally be ready for big grocery. "We're ready now," says Simpson, " We have the capability to handle any sized order and we've also negotiated some great new distribution deals to make sure we can fulfill large orders."
Simp's Serious Caesar and Simp's Dill Pickle Caesar will soon be available at Save On Foods, Urban Fare, Bi Low Foods, Quality Foods and Choices Markets on a per store basis. The team has hustled hard to get to this point, now they believe it is up to the consumer.
"We have had demand from all over the country" says Nixon, "so now's the chance for people to try us, and if their local Save On, Choices etc. doesn't have us, to help us get on shelves by requesting us by name. Every request, every mention, every social media post is truly appreciated by the three of us, it's the fuel to our fire."
Simpson adds, "We are in the system now, so we have the opportunity to get into 110 stores to begin with and another 110 plus if the people ask for us, so really, it comes down to people liking and believing in our efforts. Any request to get us in store from the consumer speaks volumes with the stores and higher ups."
As for the next steps, Jobe is optimistic stating, "This type of recognition speaks to the effort of our family and friends as well, the whole community has really been behind us and to get this big win just inspires us to hustle and make bolder moves so we have and we have more big announcements to come"
Simp's Serious Caesar Mix launches in the Pattison stores soon. If you would like to see your local Save On carry their products, ask for them by name in store.