40 Stories for 40 Years – Profilee 4
Cyndi did not realize she would create a “green” laundry product when she decided to explore self-employment. In fact, when she first came to New Ventures in 2008, she had a completely different business idea! Ultimately, the birth of Cyndi’s child would present her with an idea she had not thought of before.
When Cyndi became a mother, she found she did not like the options that were available for effective washing and drying of cloth diapers. This is when she decided she could create a better design for all-natural wool dryer balls. After months of trial and error, LooHoo Wool Dryer Balls was born.
In the spring of 2011, Cyndi came back to New Ventures Maine to participate in Beyond Start-up. In the class, she learned about ways to expand her business and set financial goals. Cyndi shares that it “was a reminder of key things for the business.” “I found out how much money I need to bring in and developed a plan to make it happen,” says Cyndi.
Since 2011, Cyndi has been busy building her business and expanding her wholesale accounts. “It’s wonderful to have others excited about my business in different ways and to be thinking about the growth steps,” Cyndi shares.
When asked what advice she would give new business owners, she says, “Start building your team & cheerleaders early – even before you need the people. Meet with different mentors, bankers, lawyers, accountants, etc. to find someone you’ll love to work with.”
Cyndi has been a guest entrepreneur speaker at several events and has received several notable grants. The first grant from the Maine Technology Institute helped her research new efficiencies for her production process. She also received the Eileen Fisher Grant and was a SPANX by Sara Blakely “Leg Up” Promotion winner/featured entrepreneur. In addition, she was selected as the SBA 2014 Home-Based Business Awardee for Maine and New England.
Cyndi reflects, “Staff members like Gigi, Jenn, and Wendy have been with me every step of the way. They have nominated me for awards, counseled me during challenges, and cheered me on at shows. NVME has been incredibly supportive of my business career.”