Vested Capital
Vested Capital

Episode 29 · 1 year ago

(EP29): Arthur Menard, CEO And Founder Of Lambs, Radiation Protection Clothing DTC Brand And 8-Figure Business


Arthur Menard is the CEO and co-founder of Lambs, a clothing brand that blocks 99% of EMFs (cellphone, 4G, 5G, Wifi, Bluetooth radiation) as well as 10x the amount of UVs compared to traditional clothing.

His company is doing 8-figures in sales, having got their start selling men's underwear online -- which I actually purchased several years ago.

Arthur has an interesting backstory, having first got started as an entrepreneur selling online training, then later co-founding a local marketing app supporting French bakeries. 

The story behind Lambs however, is the most interesting, given he was blazing a trail with a new form of clothing.

If you're selling anything DTC (direct to consumer) or looking to invent a new category, this podcast will be insightful.

Enjoy the interview.




Hey there, this is yarrow and welcome to vested capital, Episode Number Twenty Nine, featuring my guest Arthur Manard, the CEO and Co founder of Lamb's. Vested capital is a podcast about how people make money and put their capital to work. I interview start up founders, Angel investors, venture capitalist, Crypto and Stock Traders, real estate investors and leaders in technology. So I don't know if you're aware of the company lambs. It's a clothing company that initially started by providing men's underwear with a material in it that would protect the body from radiation, in particular cell phone radiation or wireless radiation. I actually came across this product, I'm not sure when it was, a couple of years ago, and I bought some of the underwear. As a health conscious person and someone who are ready put my phone onto airplane mo whenever I would wear it on my body. This was a product I understood and it made sense to me. You know, fast forward to a couple of weeks ago and we get a booking for my company inbox Doun to do a discovery call with the cofounder and CEO of lambs, and I was like, oh, that's exciting. This is a company know and a product I bought from, and I actually brought a pair of my underwear with me when we did the discovery call, you know, over zoomed as to show the founder that I have some of those underwears. We had a bit of chuckle about that. But then I was surprised, as Arthur goes on to tell me during this discovery call, that he actually listened to this podcast, I don't know, something about ten years ago. Obviously it had different name back then. It was the entrepreneurs journey podcast, but it was still me doing it and it was one of the places where he got inspired to start his very first business, which we hear about in this interview. He was in the online education space, helping students get better at studying and he actually had an online course that he sells and it still sells today. Incredibly. It's a hundred percent automated business. So you'll hear about how we set that up and why he decided to get into the education space as his first business. You also hear about Arthur's next business, which was in the APP space. So they created an APP called one APP, and when I say they, it's himself and his brother, and you'll hear about this. It's a very French orientated and Arthur is from Paris. That's where he was born, and it was basically an APP that serviced the bakeries in France, providing, you know, various social media related marketing support for bakeries and small businesses in France. You'll hear that store and how they grew that company. A lot of manual door to door knocking to get customers with that one, which then eventually led to today's main topic, which is lambs, the company that Arthur was co founder and still running over eight figure business, thousands of customers around the world. They're not just doing men's underwear. There's woman's underwear, that shirts, there's in Canada they called a Torque, or in Australia they call it a beanie you put on your head. So another way to protect hisself from radiation, and that's the idea. It's all health conscious clothing to protect you from the elements, not just the weather elements, but the radioation coming from all of the technical devices we have around us all the time. I think you'll like this interview a specially if you're looking to create a physical product and basically invent something new, which is what Arthur had to do. He'll share the story of how he came up with the idea and how he manufactured the very first version of his product. So that will be interesting if you want to do something similar, so make sure you stay tuned for that. So, before I press play on the conversation I had with Arthur, a reminder that this episode is brought to you by Inbox done, the company that are booked in for a discovery call that eventually led to this podcast being recorded in the first place. In box done is a company that provides virtual executive assistance to take over your email, doing replies to your messages, organizing email, managing email, your calendar, booking and scheduling, so all the conversations around bookings and meetings and gathering information and making sure the timing is right. Basic admint ask so if you have anything to do with customer service, data entry, any kind of software updates, communicating with the rest of your team, basically what you would expect an executive assistant to do, but is especially qualified with superior communication skills, which we find is necessary to handle something as personal and private as important as email, which is definitely the specialization of inbox done. So if you're drowning an email messages, if you want someone to take over managing your calendar and you just need that righthand person to kind of clone you, inbox done is the service for you. You can go to Inbox Doncom, book a Discovery Call, tell us about your needs, what kind of business you're in, and then we can be in the process to match you with two of our assistants who you then work with them directly. Their dedicated to you and they become part of your team and basically the go to work to simplify and make your life a whole lot easier and free you up get you at least a couple of hours back each day. That's inbox donecom. Okay, let's begin today's episode. Hello, Arthur, thank you so much for joining me today. Yeah, it's a pleasure to be here. So a little bit of serendipity how this podcast came together. I did not expect to a... you through the way we met that. It was also surprised to find out that we had a connection in the past. You had read my blog and perhaps you were surprised to know that I had purchased some of your underwear from your company get lambs, or lambs as it's known, which, for those who don't know, lambs is a company that provides at least when I bought my underwear, it was just underwear that protects you from the Wi fi signals, the phone signals, all the radiation going around. I remember when I was looking at the I think it was a facebook ad I must have seen for your company at the time. Maybe instagram. I'm not sure where I came across it, but you're a probably where, everywhere, and this is a few years ago, and I remember going this makes a lot of sense. Creating clothing that blocks what our laptops and our phones and our computers are missing appeal to me. I've I was in one of those people that was, you know, I didn't like to put my phone on my back pocket a hundred percent of the time, like I put it on airplane mode whenever I'm putting it near my body. You know, that sort of daily have it. I'm so I'd love to hear the the the story of how you came up with this idea and how do you even build underwear their blocks radiation like that. You are the cofounder and CEO of lambs, so we can talk about that. Would love to dive into your background as well, but just for a kind of a summary of where lambs is at today. Do you want to talk a little bit about you know, how successful the company is? Yeah, sure, so. Lens is actually the first kind of company of its kind of the world, which is health enancing a pearl. So we design lambs and all of its products with one thing in mind, which is, how can we help our customers on their health and will's journey to be healthier without having to change their habits? So we started off with where it's radiation, then added a few things. Are tshirts are you pffty, which means that they block niney eight, ninety plus percent of movie rays as well. So really trying to remove as many ex stresses as possible from the body. It's a nate for your company. We have tens of thousands of clients here in the US, but also all around the world. I don't know if you were in Canada, where you bought are still in Australia? I was probably Australia when I bought them or rooming around your maybe Maybecaun't know that was somewhere on the world. Yeah, and it's growing really already fast, which is awesome, and it's it's a pretty amazing journey. And just to go back to your intro of certain deputy, I was listening to this very podcast almost ten years ago when I had my first job actually, so I was driving an hour every day to get to work on our to get back and listening to the amazing stories of people on the on your podcast. So it's pretty awesome for me to be able to show mine here. Yeah, I know I'm decided to share your story and I love hearing from a long term listener. Ten years ago is a long time ago. I feel like there's a bit of a French Internet marketing kind of Mafia almost. I don't know if you're part of it, but I know I have enough friend Alexei Santine. He was person who came from France to Australia. I met him and then through him I've there is another personal my show called Aurelian Amicer, who created system do io. He was a guest on this show. And then Olivia Rowland was Internet marketer echnically with many, many years ago. I had him on the show as well and I felt like every time I spoke to a French person who's doing something online, they all knew each other. So is is I don't know what you know, if you if you when you left France, but is that kind of true? Is that sort of a strong community of entrepreneurs, online entrepreneurs and France? Yeah, so I met Odievier, as well as Seedestian, which is an another one of these famous marketers, in France, a few years ago before leaving friends. I think they did a great job at creating a very strong community and helping each other out. And Yeah, I think they did a great job at trying to educate the market a little bit like you did, like in two thousand and when do you stop? Two thousand and five, something like this. They were obviously friends as a little behind in everything. So it's, I think, yeah, around the two thousand and eight, two thousand and nine is when it is when these guys get started and and started to try and help the the online community, launching their own courses in products. Yeah, they have definitely very strong ties together and you exposed to any of that back then or like. was there any connection to it? Or a little bit? I mean, I followed their material early on, but then I quickly moved to actually the the original source. So I'm more like the English speaking American marketers. So the Americans are the bill. Most of you, to be honest, consumed a lot of your materials. But yeah, you. Who else was I following back then? Pat Flynn was big influence as well and a yeah, awesome. Okay, well, let's continue this dive in Der History. So born and raised in France, I'm assuming, born and raised in Paris. Paris, okay, parents. Any entrepreneurial influence there from your parents? or so it's more when I grew up, apparently calling to my parents, when every kid is going to tell you that they want to be a policeman or a firefighter or an astronaut or something like this, all I had was ideas for businesses. Most of them were probably...

...not great, but growing up I knew that I wanted to build something, and this idea of innovation and building something from the ground up was very ingrained in as I was growing up. My grandfather was an entrepreneur and that might have come from him, but both of my parents never studied any company, but we're very enthusiastic at the idea of me trying to build something into not a silly full of the footsteps of the traditional and at traditional way. So they were very smartly form from the any early age. Does that mean you had some kind of business as a teenager or you planning on you studying business first? No, I definitely did a bunch of things when I was a kid. Why do? I was building websites. I had a whole little add thing running that was funding my whatever I needed to purchase when I was a kid. So probably started this when I was ten to twelve and throughout like middle school and high school I was I was running ads on a bunch of websites that I had designed and built. Definitely nothing that I'm proud of today in terms of what was out there. It was mostly about, I can't remember what, like video games and a bunch of different things, and that was kind of my first dabble into building stuff back then. Not Rebuilt, not really built for money, to be perfectly transparent, like, it was mostly more like if I was passionate about something, I'd build the website and a community around it and then put ads and on top of it, and that's gonna but never try to optimize or or really make money of any salt with this site from the bucket money that was making. So I got a late start in the real business world. So in terms of your your kind of studies, then if you were obviously aware of the Internet, you knew how to build website nights. That already is a skill set that gives you an advantage. What was the Path Foo, did you go to university and study something related to business, or did you do something else to go straight into the workforce, or what was the path? Yeah, no, I definitely, I definitely studied. So I was I've kind of always followed my passions in life, to be honest, and I was super interesting to things. Number One, I knew I wanted to be an entrepreneur and I knew I wanted a business component to what I was studying and to I've always been fascinated with human health. So very only on, aside from from building businesses or innovation, what I view. The other thing that I was super interested in was how can we up Tomizelf? And Pretty early on I've been exposed to people developing cancers and friends of family dying from secondhand smoking, and that really had an impact on me, on realizing that what the choices that I was making today added had an impact on on my likelihood to be sick tomorrow, and I started getting myself in this place. And so I ended up doing two message degrees, one message degeries in engineering and biology, with a specific focus on human health and biotechnologies, and then completed this with an MBA shortly after to go a little bit deeper in in the business. On the business side. How much do you how much of your IBA to use in real world? Nothing, not a lot, but but definitely opened up a lot of doors and and make great friends and great connections there, and a few of my baddies went went on to create amazing companies which I'm really looking up to. So that was probably the best bomb. No, great, so you finish an MBA. What do you do next? Like, is that a case of all, I'm going to be an academic, I'll just, you know, try and get work in the university, or I'll go do research, like, what were you thinking at the time? I also did it mostly because I knew it would really help in my entrepreneurial journey afterwards. So this NBA was actually I majored in entrepreneurship, which is a weird major per se, but the way the program was designed was really designed in in a way that would can help us build our first company. Watched at school, which is what I did, except that he was my second company. So I started my first real business when I was twenty, during my first master's degree, and then my second one whilst I was whilst I was at school, during Maybea so I cannot have a habit of starting school and studying a business at the same time. Okay, how did those two businesses go and what were they? So the very first one, I'll go a little bit back in time for this one. I started following excited when I was a kid, looking into personal development, pretty fascinated about this whole world of bettering myself and trying to be on a journey of, you know, just improvement, and stumble upon one book which are probably very familiar with, which is the fours work week by Team Ferris, and this book had...

...a massive impact on me. When I was eighteen, nineteen, a time in how I looked at the world and that's what propelled me to actually start my very first business. And I remember reading this book like okay, well, what should you launch? If you're like if you should looking for a business idea, and I'm like, yeah, I was nineteen years old back then, or twenty and and I had no experience in life fixed that, you know, like the traditional, traditional stuff. But for one thing, which is in France, if you want to get into the AV schools, you have to do the equivalent of the sats in the US after two years of very intense studies, and it's compete, you exam and, based on your ranking, get into the best schools. So it's two years of your life that you're studying, where you're studying super hardcore and and you have this one exam that kind of determines the rest of your life from the academic perspective. So lots of pressure and back then, so I just completed that, ranked very well, fortunately, and I was tutoring kids to for specifically math and biology, and I realized that all of my time that I was spending tutoring those kids was spent mostly teaching them about how to work rather than how to math or to do math or anything like this, and that kind of got me going on. Well, I should probably create a course that teaches students how to work more efficiently, which is the which was the most important parts? Not, but you have so much to learn and to and to do that if you're not organizing yourself, probably you're setting yourself up for failure and and for Bon out e ster. So created this first course side selling it and then realize quickly that it was not build the right way. Trash everything, follow your loop raint back then, can I rebuild everything from the ground up? And yes, spend the next two or three years read, just exploring with this. So that's how I learned online ads. That, sorry, man, how to write copy, probably automation systems, side a whole away bird. I probably use your feet links to get this started. I had a whole. Yeah, we're were sequence with up cells, with with all this. So it was a it was an amazing first experience to learn about online marketing. A lot has changed since then, but yeah, and up to these day the business is still going. It's it's fully automated, not touching anything. Yeah, so that was my first experience with with online marketing and that was gonna. The only thing I knew back then was, okay, well, I've studied hard for two years and I can teach other kids how to do this, and I think with this I helped somewhere around tenzero students. I don't have the latest numbers because, I said, I haven't touched that in in a couple of years, but that was a that was a great first phase venture into into this. Well, yeah, it sounds so good. He why did you stop or didn't stop it? You let it go in automatic mode, but did you just want to try something different? So you just let that run itself and start something new. So I was always wanted to do something a little bigger as well. So the biggest limitation for this was the market size, which is they are about the there are forty year or Eightyzero students that goes this route every year, which is quite a lot of students. But at the same time that's kind of the market limitation and it's a tough business in the sense that you spend a lot of time trying to acquire your customer, which is in your pool for two years, to to three years, and then they're gone and they're stunning their life at university and you don't have anything else to sell them. So you have a very short period of time where your customers are actually potential, where your prospects are actual prospects, and then they're gone forever. And even your customers, once you acquire them, I didn't have any up cell afterwards. Like once you're in university, what's you're in your in. So that was really the biggest imitation of the business when games, when it came to growth. And then there is the reality behind it, which is after a few years I was not really passionate about this anymore, mostly like this was another part of my life that you know, like I was not a student anymore, like I was not a student of this specific it's called preeper. I was not a preeper student anymore and I had not been for a few years. And so at some stage it just became something that I'm not sure I could really build the best the best products out there anymore because I wasn't I wasn't part of the of this world in for quite a way. Okay, makes sense. The common story. I think I've had the same idea where I'm like I want to do something bigger I'm no longer interested in this industry, but you were still studying when you started your second one. So what was the idea for that one? So the second one was a bit to be company. So realized I realized. I can't truly remember the...

...the full like a hot moment for this one, but I think it was actually a marketing class where we were starting to look at social media specifically and how big companies are using social media to create a stronger connection with their clients and just awareness with them at all times. In France you have a bunch of small businesses, especially in the food and beverage industry, so you have a lot of bakeries specifically, you have a lot of meat shops, you have a lot of flower shops, etc. So lots of small businesses that are are struggling to to face the big, you know, the warmups of the world in France. And back then start going and chatting with with those guys and realize that they had a whole or all of them had heard about social media, all of them were super interested in communicating with their clients. They're letting them know about the behind the scenes of how do you make a Baguette of the products coming for holidays, etc. Etc. Yet none of them knew how to use it, or if they did, they definitely didn't have time because they are already so busy running the whole shop and making the products and everything that goes with it. And so the second complain that I built was aimed that solving this. We were trying to help small businesses to gain visibility with social media without having to put in as much work and making it super simple for them. So we built a whole APP for for this market so that we they could use it very, very simply and be through a guided journey, be able to spend ten minutes and plan out the next couple weeks in terms of posts, with the kind of post that they needed to create explained and the whole thing super guided. So I built this with my brother and our main Beta Tester was our grandmother. Essentially, we're like, okay, she doesn't know anything about how to use a phone, has used the Internet, and we're going and we're having her try the APP and kind of twicked it till she could actually use it as she was like, okay, I understand, that's easy. They're all right. We get it nailed down and yeah, and then I'll first customers where bakeries. We start going door to doors to bakeries trying to sell them in the software. We build this on a SASS model, which I was always been my favorite models of old times, where your choir customer once and hopefully she do good job, will this day forever. And I believe that our very first customer is still with us today. She's gonna cool. Wow. So what's the name of this business? This is one APP ONE APP. Okay, so that's that's if I'm looking at your your profile and Linkedin. That's the other besides lamb's obviously your current business. One APP is is still your your present company. You're like a board member. So and method preppers. I see you are still listed there as a founder too. So it sounds like you build a business, you don't you know, shut it down or sell it. You you let one continue to run automatically. What happened with one APP did it grow to the point where you could retire young and rich, like, how did that go? I don't think I'm ever going to retire. This is my idea of every diirement is to do what I'd love to do and if that's what it is, then I've been retired my whole life. In a sense, the good way of putting it, I agree, I thought. But how well did it have? DID ONE APP go? It's obviously still going now, seven years later. So what's the growth story there? Yeah, so it went very well. Actually, I was building this on the side during my Mba and I think we grew the team to goes to ten people very, very quickly and we grew to a point where what it became was, okay, well, we either need to go after other markets internationally or we need to figure out like a different bath for the company to get past the ceiling of just the nature of the market. Is that because you're round a bakeries or you just ran out of every type of business, small business in France with a lot of businesses. Yeah, and never an extreme man, know for sure. For sure, we we were. We were focusing on bigger cities mostly, and just due to senator that the business limitation was that with this type of of businesses it's a lot of personal relationship that you need to develop. So they're very happy to use your product, but they want to meet you in person. First they want you to go and train them and explain them how it works. And so the limitation that we grew into was, okay, well, we can only do if that's how it's going to work. We can't do cities that are like three, four five hours away and we need to make sure that in one given day when we're going out to meet these people prospect our clients, that we were... to optimize the day. So that kind of limited very quickly where we could go and and how we could grow there. And so the business still grew to do we were doing six figures essentially, but based off this, that was kind of the limitation. That's to how big we could grow it. And you didn't want to like get a sales team to kind of go door to door and just, you know, pay them on commision or something like that. This is what it so this is what we grew originally and but again, like the challenge was we could only have a sales team in areas where it made sense to have, where we had enough bakeries enough clients to really make it work. Otherwise the commission would be I mean just from a kind of mixed perspective. You still need to pay people minimum wages and France, even if there are sales team and just based off minimum wages plus commission, etc. It only made sense in big cities, and this is what we did. So we built it to this point and and now we're thinking, okay, well, we've kind of siderated the big cities in France. Do we go to other countries? Like how? How do we run this? And at this stage I'm also at point where I want something that like the idea that I had for my career was I wanted to launch a business where I could impact millions of people, and so the BB SASS was awesome from a business perspective and from an experiment experience perspective, but I was like, I would love to go and do something that really were I can really impact a lot more people. And this is the discussion that I had done with my brother, which was like, okay, well, I'm this is awesome what we built, but I I don't want to continue on building this abroad because because, honestly, I just want to change of scenario. So he took the reins of the business and he's a little bit younger than I am, so he was pretty happy and not to have me in his hair to to grow this and that. That worked out pretty well, and so he took the reins. I stayed on just to help out with this Strategi and I went on to create lamps. That was that was the moment where I was like, okay, well, if I'm for the next one, I want something going to learn from the two businesses and I was like, okay, I want something where I've got a huge market size and I want something where I'm really passionate about what I'm feeling, so that in a few years from now I don't have this feeling of like, well, I'm not a student anymore, therefore like I'm not connected to my market. And so that's the that's how I knew that lamps was the right fit when I when I when I started it, because I was like, okay, I I can be in there for ten years. That's what that's my like, twenty years, it's all good, no pun intended. There with the right fit. Interesting evolution you've got. So you were an education marketer and I can see why connecting with my work and Pat Flynn would lead you down that kind of path. Then an APP, which is a little more tricky because it's software. And then you're doing like doughter door sales, which is, you know, different from selling a digital information product, you know with email marketing and so on. And then now you say I'm going to do something completely different, physical I mean not completely different that it is online, but you are selling a physical item. How do you begin that kind of business, like did you have any understanding of like how do you manufacture underwear? Plus the added aspect of this, and I'd love to know to how you even came up with the technology for that. That lamb's idea and in the first place. Yeah, so I can watch is for how the idea came about first. So again, aside from entrepreneurship, one of my big thing was health optimization. So I was reading countl his books on the topic, I studied Human Baology, etc. Etc. So one thing that I realize one day as we're having so we're having dinner with friends and all of us take their cell phones out of there, of our pockets, and we all put in table phase down and that prompted the discussion, which was okay, well, we've all heard about the fact that we probably shouldn't put out self phons in our pockets, next to our next to our reproductive organs, and yet we're all doing this on a daily basis, and so this was the moment I was like, that's interesting. So we all were. I'm pretty health conscious, most of my friends are. We're watching what we're eating, we're watching what we're putting inside our buddies, but we're not really watching what works posing our buddies too, and what kind of external stressors is they're out there and how bad are they? And so looked into wise relations specifically. Realize that it's a class to be Umanical, sinologen, which is the same as a car exhaustumes according to the World Health Organization. And that was the Har moment where I was like, okay, if there was a car running... my bedroom or my living room at all times, probably not. This thing there and this is effectively what I'm doing with we're less radiation, except that it conts smell it in the specific case, but it's it is impacting my body, and so that's what prompted me to start looking too. Can we create? Can we create something that solves this problem and that helps us, essentially money to what we're exposing our bodies too. Looked into solutions that's already existed and in turns out that NASA space suits have a built in relation proof technology because astronauts in space like exupposed to a ton of cosmic radiations. I one of my friend, one of my good friend, is an incredible engineer. Is got a ton of patterns under his belt and he really has this beautiful mind of creating solutions whenever problems exist. So I we sat down, we went through his creative process of how can we use the same principle, the same technology, but adapted for for garments and our gaments, even the best thing. It turns out that it is. And how can we how can we adapt it? So spend quite a bit of time. Back then he was completing his PhD. We had access to a lab and yeah, just got started with iterations of fabric to try and treade something that would actually block wide as variation. I didn't know anything about creating a physical product. Our very first product was terrible, absolutely terrible. But what I did know was how to help to sell something on the Internet. And so he was focused on building the product. And he's not part of the company. He has a he has a share of the company. He's someone who doesn't want to pay to business, so he loves to create technologies, etc. But he he's more of a he's definitely an inventor for sure. So we owns n sick with in the company for for creating the technology. But as he's as he is darating on on versions of product, I'm trying to figure out, okay, how am I going to sell the thing online and how can I get this off the ground with a testing market and be spending? I mean, how do I optimize my spending? Essentially. So back then, kickstarter had been a thing for for a few years now. So looked into equally crowdfending. Spent about six months to create off first campaign, and that's how we get started. We just did a very we did campaign with zero marketing budget, essentially letting our friends and family know and from their word of mouth, word of mouth grew and grew enough to for us to start off as batch of product manufactured in a proper factory and, as I said, a pretty, pretty terrible product at the beginning because we didn't know anything but how to make comments. But you know, got us going and and we got we gather feedback and we grew the business essentially with this initial input of money, which was our first crat funning. It was pretty small, like it was twenty twenty Fivezero, something like this, but that was enough to get us going to get a first proosian batch, start signing the product, get more, get more money in the bank and kind of get the ball running like this. That was men's underwear. So it's kind of scratching my own itch in a sense, and so so yeah, that's how we got that's how we funded the company. And then fast forward a few months later. There's an event here in the US called CS, the consumer the trend show. It's a massive event where companies go and present their latest inventions and novations in in the technology world for consumers. And so we back then our KNI product is underwear. We reach out to the CS. They have a special startup program where you can go there for I think it's like a thousand dollars for for booth. It's it's nothing, but they have to select you. They love the idea and and they got us a booth in there in the Startup pavilion, and we went there and we're like, okay, we're literally spending all of our money going to Les Vegas to this consumer drink show. Back then we're based out of friends, there are flights, there are all the cussociated with the conference, hotels, etc. We're literally spending our entire budget on this. But we're like this is the one place where, if anything, we should pick up a lot of traction and we will have people become a moore or where what we're doing. So it's our one shot and we don't want to miss it. So we brain some on how can we get maximum exposure, and the way we did it was we went there, we had t shirts on which explained what we were doing and no pants, so we walked around this conference. Essentially it's actually an ourder where got a ton of attention and it was pretty awesome. So we had like ton of journalist. I remember these journalist. I think she was from the...

ABC News or something. She's on our way to some interview, she sees us, she turns around with our grammar cruise she's like Nope, we're going this way. Kind of paid off to to play on this, because we ended up being the number one start up in terms of exposure. That year they had like the sea, the CS at, this tool that was monitoring the Internet for keywords and and the name of the company just get pupping up everywhere. I have a question. Actually, I thort of I have two questions, but I gotta ask one now. Lambs. Where did the name come from in the first place? Yeah, originally we started company with a different name, and the number one question that we were getting from our customers, given the fact that it is health ennouncing a proud that is protective and it's made out of silver fibers. Not sure if we can see properly in the camera, but the prefect question that we're getting was, is that comfortable or is it going to be like a chain mail type of garment? Because, you know, and and we took at we took a lot of time trying to figure out like how to create something that be as comfortable, if not more comfortable, than Dino tradtional government, and so we decided to rename the company with a name that would that would really feel, that that would really scream comfort. And so lambs. There was this idea of like code of wool of a lamb. That is a very protective, but soften and complete. What was the first name of the company? The originally the first name was part the first time was spartan. So paton went complete, Spartan Spartan. Okay, just think. So when can I get's the other way completely in terms of in terms of naming. And also lambs was. I mean the idea for the company was obviously, Sayd to go broader, and spotting originally was to kind of appeal to manliness, which doesn't really work for women, and we do have a women lane today. So yeah, yeah, makes sense. Okay, all right. So back to the CS story. You're the number one start up in terms of exposure at this event, but what does that actually mean for a business, because it sounds like you spent your twenty five grand kickstarter money, which was meant to assume go to manufacture the first batch to then send all those backers as well. So does that CS exposure lead to more investors or retailers buying your product or like, how does it play out? So we had already manufactured the product. We we had already sent the products to our backers back then. We also had some seed money that we put in into the company ourselves, and so that's that's actually what we spend mostly. So we had products, we had products, we had inventory. We had already did evet knockicks dollar. So what it did is one cells. So we sold out of all of our current inventory, which was great, and and got some Cashu in the company and to as you said, that allowed us to go out to investors now with something more so when creating something with the I mean our end goal is to become the number one closing brand in the world for US health conscious people. So definitely a very, very big vision, and so we realize quickly that we're going to need to help and we're going to need excellent investors if we want to grow the business. The challenge you have when you're a kid. I mean I had built a couple of businesses, but on this one, essentially we had, aside from the product and this first campaign, we didn't have any anything to really show two investors. And this was really helpful in the sense that, yes, this is interesting, like this is speaking up interest in the world, but also, and mostly, it's like we can get stuff done, like you can trust us as a team and by them, it's me and my co founder. So we're like we're two people, but it's like yeah, we'll get an underwear, will get well, we've got brain juice and and we can show you what we did so far, and that was very helpful and convincing people to that we were the right team to take this forward and to grow this and and that's how we, we were both to convince our first investors. Okay, so to questions on that. How did you you meet your cofounder and like, what are the skill sets, because this is not a software startup, so to speak. You know, it's a it's a DTC director consumer product. I understand the need for the inventor but, like you said, he didn't continue on as an active founder. I know your skill are there. You're the marketing guy, so I get what you bring the table. You would have been, you know, ready to put out all the ads and do the SEO and whenever you can to growth hack this company. What was your cofounder needed for? Yeah, operations mostly, and someone who I was essentially looking for someone who had a very different personality from me. So I'm very creative. I can come up with different strategies, I can build a vision for the future and...

I need someone who is very, very regular, very talented at taking something and operating, essentially, and I met my co founders through online ads. You, I put on that for someone and it was interesting because the I essentially wanted to recruit someone back then. I mean I have a lot of friends that would fit the bill, but they were all working on something at the time. The natural thing that came from me was like, okay, well, I'm going to recruit someone probably the most an appealing ad which essentially I said, well, you need to invest money to get into the business, because I wanted someone who was serious about it, not you know, like Oh, that sounds interesting. So my cofounder, Thomas, was the last applicant out of probably I had two hundred people who replied to this Ad. Where did you put the ad? Just like as a job on Linkedin or story shown shop bust. Okay, yeah, that's essentially something like indeed, yeah, had about two hundred applicants. Thomas was the very last one to apply because after two hundred I was I need to shut this off like this. Is Got The friends folks phone call with him. As I'm writing, a bicycle to go meet one of the applicants actually, and during this phone call I'm like, there's something about this guy, like he he seems to be Super Smart, and so I built a process to kind of go through skill sets. I'm a big, big fan of having people do something instead of just interviewing them, and Thomas's case study was was was really stellar. What was interesting as well is, again, like I said, like I was asking him to invest money, to buy equity into the business so that I know, I knew you would be serious about it. He had just had his first kid back then as well. And and yeah, there is this guy who just said his first kid, who's like, I'm going to quit my job, I'm going to invest money and I'm going to get this off the ground with you, who's Super Smart, who just did us the other case study. And Yeah, we're super well paired and we've been working right together since then. And he has to look good in underwear if you're going to walk around the trade show floor. Is Wearing awhere at so he looks great. So then you decide to raise some funding, and I can totally understand why. It's a physical product. It's you have to do that dance where you you sell a bunch. You get some cash, but you have to use that cash to manufacture the next and so on. So how do you raise money for this time? What kind of valuation and what are you looking for during that first raise, because I'm assuming that was also the first time you ever raised money for your own star up at this level, I mean raising money stuff first off. So it's a it's a massive dance with investors. It's a very interesting it's very interesting exercise because it's all about social proof. Essentially, the first investors that you meet, they're potentially interested, but they want to see, like, okay, do you have other investors? And I'm talking with a bunch of interested people. It's okay, let me know when. Let's the update, like as anyone invested yet. So it's a it's a very interesting exercise where you learn to essentially you need to find something this first person who's going to make the decision. And Yeah, so what happened is shortly after the CS we actually had a first investor who contacted us. So from my schools I've got someone who reaches out and he's like hey, my father, he is he's a CEO of this big like fabric company and and he'd love to talk to you because he thinks that's super interesting. We meet with that person. He wants to invest, back then, two or three hundred thos into the business, but he has one specific requirement, which is I want to be the sole investor in the business. I don't want any CO investors and and that's it. And back then, when you're just getting started, like getting an intrusion of cash of three hundred thousand sounds like wow, this is absolutely awesome. And I'm chatting with the partner of a VC Fund who essentially was she was she's super bright as well. I read admire her and she was. She essentially walked me through the numbers and she was like, if you're taking this money right now as a sole investor, there is no way that you're going to be able to grow the company to a point where either you don't need any money anymore or you can raise more capital, because this is just not enough to get you to your next stage. Can I walk me through this? I realize that whither, thanks to her, went back to that guy side talking about well, actually, like here's how much it's going to take. Like her's your dated business model, and if you want to be the sole investor, that fine, but then you need to put in twice as much or we need other investors. He went on to try and fund a cupcat of us, which was which was pretty funny. We have patents, we have patent protection on on our technology, but that never stopped anyone, and so we had a cupcat that started a few months later that he funded. That was...

...the very first guy that we discussed with. So the copycat today is dead. So that's at least I mean on this and that didn't really work out for him. But we went on to find amazing investors, looking mostly for smart money at the beginning. I mean actually we're we've always done that, and trying to find people in the space. So our investors were all coming either from the health and wellness world or from the apparel world, and this was really instrumental for us. So later on, we today have the former president of Lulu Lemon was an investor and advisor to the company, and we have quite a few people who are in India approl space as well, and that really helped us bill the product that was much better than the original one. We're like, well, we don't know what we're doing. So we knew, we knew how to sell products online, we knew how to create this technology, but we didn't know anything about making governments, about logistics, about all this. So so, yeah, we did this dance. We convinced the first person to write us a first check was seven point fivezero dollars, you know, like but at least it got it got the ball rolling. And then we got a tenzero check and then we got a twentyzero check and and slowly but trolley we were able to put together around and and raise office from the equity which was which was customedian bucks and and which would got topped off by a little bit of government money as well. We got a grant for four hundred K. So how have you managed to grow to the point you are today, like, what's what's worked well for you? Well, first off, what of mouth? So for us that's always been the biggest, the biggest channel. We really focused early on on trying to figure out if we had project market fit, which is to people, do people repurchase our products? And especially with something like lambs. It's the decision that you're making, which is okay. Well, I care about my health and I care about this and I want to take this step of like wearing health enhancing a pearl, wearing something that protects me from my ration, from you ceter when you're making that choice, in theory you should be making that choice for every day of the week, not like I'm going to buy one and that's it. So very interesting aspect for us was like monitoring, okay, our people repurchasing the product. And so we spend a lot of time at the beginning working on a product to make it good enough that people would want to actually switch out to two lamps fully. And and then the second pieces were touching something that is a very important value for people health. And so as much as I don't really share, which sucks some wearing because I don't really care enough like something that I do for my health, I'm going to share with the people that are important and close to me. And so that's something that we really tried early on to to make work for us, which was, okay, can people going to be telling difference and family about lambs? So that was the very first one. Was Okay, let's make sure that we have a product that people want to talk about and then and then the second piece was online, online ads, which is probably how you found us, and this was a skill set that I learned to develop back in in my metappa day days, which today is such a different landscape what it was a few years ago, where you could go and and you add profitable adds super easily and whatnot. For us it was it was not like this at the beginning, so we had to Kinda learn how this had evolved in in recent years. And I would say the biggest difference is our very early on. Our first employee is someone that I actually met whilst traveling the world. I did a one year stint where I went around the world before starting lambs. Actually met this guy, who is the smartest engineer I've ever met and who joined the company as our first employee. And what was instrumental for us is having someone technical on board from the get go so that we could eater it very quickly on our website and get precise data. So, compared to any starting business, we hadd a on more data and we had the ability to go and iterate without, you know, spending tens of thousands of dollars on a freelancer for every website edit and we were focused on one thing when looking at online ads, with like okay, the end of the funnel is going to be our website, so how do we make sure that the website is as clear as possible and converts? And so we went on to increase our core version rate threefold before we actually really spend money on online ads. And we did this via AB testing all the time, sending minimal traffic, but monitoring everything, doing a lot of focus groups with people and like is this clear? Do you understand what we're doing, exteter etc. And through this we were able to first fine tune the end of the funnel and...

...then finally send people over to the website once we knew that we had something that was free, still clear, that was converting a R sir, and to this date we keep on iterating. Just launch the new version of the website recently, which is performing even better than the old one. This is something that is very ingrained into what we're doing, which is constant, constant experiments. But yeah, if I too pointing down to one like our success to one factor was like very, very early on, focusing on these important metrics, which was, okay, our people getting what we're doing. Well, yeah, that's very smart for such an early phase. Normally people do that later on. I think to really start at the beginning. If people want to see the website, obviously get lambscom. I could go see your your most recent version, like you just said, the new version. I know we got to kind of start wrapping up my father. I have to run this time. Ei Thought, what is it day in the life like for you now, because I know obviously you were the cofounder, with just your one cofounder. You were the one to be a Vanti were the one wearing the product, you were the one probably writing the copy, running the ads. Now it's a, like you said, an eight figure business. You've got thousands of customers. I'm guessing you don't do the same roles as you did back then. So what's a day in the life for you with the business? Yeah, it is very different from what I was doing back then. We now have a team so which are taking care of very suspects of the company. I spent most of my time doing three things. One, working with my team, making sure that we're working on the right stuff, that it's going in the right direction, and they're amazing and and the company would not be any work. Close two were we're at today without their hard work. So, you know, just making sure that they're just stay motivated that and that this is going the right way. So measurement and leadership, if you will, to is I spent a lot of time exchanging with our customers, actually via email or trying to get on the phone with them as often as I can. But we're are online business and, contrary to retail you where you have someone or service where you're directly working with your clients, in our case we don't see them unless we actively try to reach out to them, which is what we do, and that allows me to better understand our audience. X are are. And that goes on to the third part, which is the strategy. So constantly working on where are we going? How can we get their more efficiently, speaking with all those heels in the space and really building this network, speaking with our investors, speaking with as many people as I can to better understand our space, better understand our clients and keep on building the division for next month's next quarter, next year, next five years. Exter. Yeah, it's amazing. It's a it's a super one thing that was fascinating in this journey was the moment where you transition from running your own business where it's you, to actually having employees and people who entire families that the business is is able to support. And and that's a moment where you're like, well, we've built something that is that is real and that doesn't need necessarily me anymore either, which is which is a pretty pretty insane feeling, like having a child and then watching them grow up. It's actually yeah, and then watching them have children and all that's all things. Yeah, I'm a lot of my friends today I have built companies where they don't know all the employees anymore. I'm not that that phase yet where we we don't know each other, but this is, I like, the child and analogy for sure. And you're in San Francisco right now. We're in Sonamon income, so Los Angeles. Yeah, there's a huge health and around the scene here, you know, I and a becommerce community as well. So it's makes a lot more sense than San Francis Scoo, which is very software focus. Yes, okay, that of course. All Right, Arthur, thank you for the story. I feel like I'd love to dive into your ad strategies and I love to dive into, you know, all the steps in the investing as well, a bit more. So there's so many layers to all this success. Maybe we can come back and do like a round two when you get to the the next stage and in twelve months or something like that, I would be on ot. Okay, let's let's put it in the calendar. Website. So obviously get lambscom for buying the product. I know when I shopped it was underwear for men. I remember seeing beanies, or Torques, as they call in here in Canada, for your head. Pop Up Women's underwear. You're wearing a tshirt. So there's clothing, apparel. You said this is going to be for healthwhere for anyone is health conscious, or clothing for anyone was health conscious. I'm your stumming socks, underwear, shorts, pants, yoga gear, active where everything in anything will eventually will be available. And get lambs. Is that about right? Yeah, we have a lot of products and in development. It takes a lot of time to develop products because, again, like we're really focused on making something, making products out was free, exceptional and that people want to share. But we have a bunch of products in in development. So if you don't find what you what you're looking for, I feel free to sign up to our mailing list and you'll probably get it at some stage. and O other ways. Should me an email at a art I'd...

...get lambscom. That's how you exchanged with all elector simmers, so feel free to just shoot me a note and yeah, I'll be happy to hear from a RT at. Get lambscom, fantastic, or get lambscom and look up to contact info. Arthur. Thank you for taking the time and keep up the great work. I'd love to see lambs when day. Maybe Ipoh. That would be fun thing to see. So yeah, go foray. Thanks your amazing being on the show. Really appreciate it and thanks everyone's for listening. All right, I hope you enjoyed that interview with Arthur minard. I feel like there's going to be a part two very soon. Do not be surprised if you see on the feed of vest the capital a second interview with Arthur. I felt like I was a little rush for time. I didn't get to ask a few of the questions I wanted to. Hundred percent my fault. I had another engagement I had to run off too, so I would have loved to have done another extra half an hour. So I'm going to ask Arthur to do a part two and we can dive into a few things around lambs I didn't get to ask and also something he's got some investment strategies that I'd love to talk about too as a fellow angel investor. I never got a chance to ask him about that. So hopefully we'll have him on a part too, but you certainly got a great overview of his life in this part one. I hope you enjoyed that and especially if you're someone who has an idea for perhaps a new type of product that's not been done before. I think just hearing the inside into how Arthur connected with an inventor, how they got the product made, like the first prototype, and then, of course, the fun story of how they went to the Convention sees in Vegas and promoted by wearing the underwear and walking around the convention, which led to a lot of exposure a lot of new customers. That was a lot of one to hear as well. If you have a family member or a friend who would benefit from hearing this story from Arthur, perhaps they're looking to create or invent a new product and build a business around it. Send them to vested Capital Episode Twenty Nine to hear Arthur's story. It will possibly lead to a breakthrough, maybe an insight or at the very least inspire them to get started with their business. And you too should subscribe to vested capital using whichever podcast playing APP you currently use, whether it's apple or Google or spotify or Amazon or audible. All of those devices, all of those APPs have the ability to subscribe to a podcast. They'll have a plus button or a follow button or subscribe button. If you click that while you're listening to vested capital, you will get a notification and usually a download of every new episode as I release it. Plus it will unlock all the previous episodes where you can listen into so many amazing stories from other entrepreneurs and successful investors in things like Crypto, stocks, property and so on. And of course, if you are an apple user, I would really appreciate if you hit the review button to leave your review within itunes for this podcast. That would really help me to rank higher in the rankings within apple and thus reach more people, and of course that leads to more great guests, more interviews for you. Okay, going to wrap it up. My name is yarrow. Thanks for listening to today's episode and I'll speak to you on the next one. Bye. Bye.

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