Meet the 5 Owned Growth Stories 2020 Finalists

Like a fine wine, some things in life just get better with ageand you can certainly say that about the Owned Growth Stories program. In our second edition of the Owned Growth Stories program, over 800 brand owners entered the contest to share their inspiring growth stories.

The determination and drive behind the ecommerce community is always impressive and this year’s Owned Growth Stories entrants were no exception. After reading through every story, selecting just five finalists was a near-impossible task.

In order to arrive at our five finalists, we opened up the selection process to all Klaviyos to help pick their favorites. Each Klaviyo could vote for up to three brands based on how clearly the entrant told their story, how persuasive they were, and how well-thought-out their plan was to spend the $25,000 grand prize. 

Each of the five finalists has won a free year of Klaviyo and a professionally-produced video in which they tell their story and how they’d grow their business if they win the grand prize. You can use these videos to determine who you think should win the $25,000 grand prize. 

But before you vote on the winner, we wanted to introduce you to the finalists:  

Feres Branchiaux  

When your mom tells you that you’ve maxed out your video game allowance and need to find another way to make money, what do you do? That’s the challenge that brothers Collin, Ryan, and Austin Gill had when they wanted to buy video games but their mom, Celena, told them to get a job or start a business. The result? Celena taught the boys how to make candles at home and the brothers started Feres Branchiaux. They started selling at local sporting events and craft fairs and, today, they have over 11,000 online customers and are sold in over 50 retail locations, including Whole Foods and Macy’s. 

Glow by Daye

Ranay Orton needed a better option to help her maintain and protect her versatile hairstyles at night. Despite the fact that Black women can spend hundreds of dollars a year on protecting their hair at night, she only found flimsy, satin caps in stores. Tired of using these cheap solutions to protect her hair, she took matters into her own hands and built a better option that could hold her hair no matter what style it was in. Originally launched on Amazon, today Glow by Daye has over 35 different variations and caps on her own website. Ranay began her business by doing everything herself, but now she depends on the team working alongside her. 

Ladder 34 

While working as a career firefighter, Lance Korhorn realized that his department was placing fire hoses that failed pressure tests in the dumpster. He wanted to do something with those hoses that had served communities for yearsand he did just that with Ladder 34 by turning old hoses into belts. The operation started selling a few belts at a time and today produces more than 1,000 belts per day from their own facility where they collect, clean, cut, sew, pack, and ship orders. They’ve also expanded their product offerings from belts to bags, wallets, coasters, rugs, and other accessories. 

True Moringa

Emily Cunningham and Kwami Williams were frustrated by the disconnect between academic literature and realities of poverty on the ground. The two came from vastly different backgrounds and traveled to Ghana together through MIT’s D-Lab. They became united by the desire to take on the challenges smallholder farmers face without access to the resources that they need. During their time in Ghana, Emily and Kwami were introduced to the Moringa tree, which has many natural benefits to it. Once back from their trip, they devised a proprietary extraction system that could help farmers and produce the highest quality natural oil nature has to offer. Fast forward to today and they have over 5,000 small farming families, have planted over two million trees, and have increased farmers’ income by 10X through True Moringa

Milky Mama

Krystal Duhaney started Milky Mama after struggling to breastfeed her first child. As a Black mother, she didn’t have the support and resources she required available to her, which inspired her to start Milky Mama to fill the void. She put the knowledge that she had accumulated from being a registered nurse to work to develop a delicious lactation cookie. Word started to spread about her cookies and customers began lining up at her front door to buy them. Ten customers turned into 50 and, soon, Krystal was working 12-hour shifts as a nurse, then going to bake cookies after her shift. Today, she has leased a bakery space and a breastfeeding support center in California and has helped over 100,000 mothers breastfeed their babies. 

Now that you’re familiar with the finalists’ stories, grab some snacks, sit back, watch the videos, and vote on who you think deserves the $25,000 grand prize! 

Found your favorite? Vote for them.

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