What It's About
Three friends take the guesswork out of meal prep with a healthy, home delivery service.
Words of Wisdom
Sandeep says that if you have an idea, you should write down a list of what you need to do to get it going and then start crossing items off of your list. And if you don't have something figured out, don't stress—tackle what you can and come back to the problem.
Writing with pen and make a mistake? Grab a cucumber, take the peel and slowly erase away the pen writing. You’ll have a clean page in no time.
Notes from Chris
Sandeep Rajmandari says he had a good life in the fall of 2015. After immigrating from Nepal to the San Francisco Bay Area for college a few years earlier, Sandeep was a new graduate. He had also been hired for a job in finance that he enjoyed. But he also had a major problem—his health was deteriorating, and he was becoming obese. The culprit? It was what he calls the Corporate American diet—lots of sugar, salt, fat, and carbs. It didn’t help that he already had a history of health troubles. As a child, he survived a near-fatal parasitic disease and was then plagued for years by periodic seizures. Then came an up-and-down battle with weight throughout his teen years. In his first year in college, he had made some positive changes. In fact, through diet and exercise, he lost more than 40 pounds and began to feel better. So, he was especially disappointed when his weight and health problems returned. At dinner one night, Sandeep complained to two friends, Jeni and Rachelle, about his unhealthy lifestyle and deteriorating health. He knew that meal-prepping would help him avoid making poor diet choices during the week, but he felt like he never had enough time. Hearing his gripe, one of those friends remarked, “Imagine how many people have the same problem?” That instant, the three friends saw both a universal problem and a potential business opportunity. Sandeep, Jeni, and Rachelle immediately started thinking about a “meal prep” side hustle. Right there at the table, they began brainstorming. They even asked their friends on social media if anyone would be interested. The immediate feedback they received gave them even more motivation to proceed. As they worked on the idea over the next few weeks, they sought out valuable feedback from potential clients and experts, including personal trainers, supplement store employees, and nutritionists. This outreach also helped build awareness so they could sign up many new customers for their soon to open business. Their early research also showed them some ways to stand out. They noticed that other meal-prep companies had basic menus with limited or no customization. Sandeep and co. decided to offer a much more extensive food, selection, customizability, and shorter delivery windows. Just one month after first discussing the idea, LoCal Foodz was open for business. Almost from day one, the business was profitable—but Sandeep, Jeni, and Rachelle decided to keep it a side hustle and to let it organically grow to a point where its demands couldn’t be met without working on it full-time. That point came sooner than expected, after just nine months. All three partners quit their jobs to work at LoCal and that year their side hustle earned over $350,000. That’s right, year one! Revenues and profits have grown each year since. The team expects their one-time side hustle, now in its fifth year, will have annual revenues of over $1M within the next 18 months. They’re looking to expand nationwide, cooking up healthy meals with lots of options for as many mouths as possible.
MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:
- LoCal Foodz: Learn more about this healthy, growing meal prep delivery service over on Sandeep's website!
- Crossfit Trainer Starts Meal Prep Service for Hungry Customers: A Crossfit trainer and her videographer partner create a healthy meal prep and delivery service, launching it with zero startup costs and growing to nearly $1m in 3 years
- Pre-Made Meals Bring In $5,500/Month After Layoff: After losing her job, this digital marketer turns to the kitchen, where she whips up pre-made meals and launches a successful crowdfunding campaign
- Quick Research Leads to Meal Planning Subscription Service: Healthy meal planning can be rough. One man is on a mission to help people be more health-conscious with his subscription-based website selling meal prep recipes
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