A group of about forty women were delighted to hear an entrepreneur success story at a recent "Women In Business," luncheon in Layton, Utah. Two women who seemed like your next door neighbors, spoke about how they created a product that is now being sold by over 35,000 business consultants in the United States and bringing in revenue over $ 100 million annually.
Kara Egan and her sister-in-law Colette Gunnell, shared their story of creating a simple product that would bring many people pleasure. They created a wickless candle that was warmed by a low wattage light bulb. With many different scents for people they decided to name their company "Scentsy."
Kara and her family were struggling financially because of her husband's health problems. After watching an Oprah show on Millionaire Moms, Kara became determined that there must be something she could do to help her family. If regular people like the people she saw on the Oprah show can create products, then why couldn't she do that too?
After watching a neighbor melt some of her old scented candles in an old potpourri burner, Kara got the idea to create scented flameless candles. She got on the phone with her sister-in-law and asked her if she would go into business with her. Colette said, YES!
Building your own company from scratch is not without challenges, but these two women conquered them with their determination and ingenuity. One important strategy they used was to make sure they knew about all the products currently available that were similar to theirs. They surveyed the market place and purchased any products that were similar to theirs. Repeatedly testing existing products and then creating a new product seemed to be the correct formula for their eventual success.
After manufacturing the products on their own and developing enough product for people to purchase, they started selling at local trade shows. It was at one of these trade shows that they met Orville Thompson and his wife Heidi. During one of the breaks at the long convention, Heidi took some of Scentsy bars home to share with her family. Her family and friends enjoyed them so much and that got Heidi's husband's attention.
Orville could see the business potential in this new product. Kara and Colette allowed Orville to help them take their business to the next level. It was the contact that they made with Orville Thompson that began the transformation of their business from a local business to a nationwide business.
Orville and Heidi Thompson bought the entire company from Kara and Colette, who are now Scentsy consultants, on May 1, 2004. They decided to market the flameless candles through direct marketing which opened up a new team of sales people. The Scentsy products are manufactured in Meridian, Idaho where there are over 500 employees.
The two mothers, Kara and Colette, that created Scentsy are heroes to many women who strive to build successful businesses. Their determination, creativity and desire paid off for them as well has thousands of other Scentsy consultants. An entrepreneur's dream come true. Congratulations!