Last December, we teamed up with New York Times bestseller Tim Ferriss and launched the Build-A-Business Contest to bribe aspiring entrepreneurs to pursue their dream and start a business with a $100,000 prize reward. During the contest, over 1,375 entrepreneurs generated $3.5M of revenue!
Craig Dalton and Patrick Buckley were one of those people that took a leap of faith and started DODOcase. They combined their passion for bookbinding and woodcraft to produce a unique iPad case. In only a few months, they got more than 10,000 orders.
It’s been 4 months since the boys received the grand prize of $100,000 so we flew down to San Francisco to catch up with them and ended up recording this awesome video. We hope it motivates you to pursue your own aspirations.
So what did they do with all that money!? Here’s a snippet of the interview we had with Craig, co-founder of DODOcase.
Q1: Since winning the contest, how are things at DODOcase? What’s new?
Things are great at DODOcase. We continue to produce exceptional cases for the iPad from our traditional book bindery in San Francisco. We’ve expanded the operation and now have our own facility just a block away from the book bindery. Since winning the contest our products have been featured in the NY Times, Vanity Fair, Sunset and will grace the pages of Vogue Magazine in December. The extended team of partners and colleagues continues to grow as we’ve launched new products like the DODObag (in collaboration with Rickshaw Bagworks) and a host of accessories.
Q2: What did you do with the $100,000 prize?
The first thing we did with the prize money was take our team, our partners and family members out for a great celebration. DODOcase has never been just about the 4 of us, it has always been about the great community of artisans and partners we work with. It was great to take a moment to celebrate all the crazy and fun stories we’ve had along the way. We had a great laugh we when asked our partners what they first thought when Patrick and I approached them with the DODOcase concept.
As for the bulk of the prize money, we’ve focused on expanding the DODOcase brand, developing new products, relaunching our website and building out our prototyping facility dubbed DODOlabs. This has enabled us to experiment with new processes and come up with new products. We just launched our second core product, the DODOcase for Kindle.
Q3: If you had one piece of advice to share with someone starting a Shopify store, what would it be?
When starting a store on Shopify, we always tell people to focus on their products and their vision and let Shopify do the rest. Don’t worry too much about the e-commerce elements of the business as the e-commerce ninjas’ at Shopify have that covered!