We had the good fortune of connecting with Jodi Watson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jodi, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
My husband has started and sold two coffee businesses. His first was a direct-to-consumer coffee business, selling subscriptions of direct trade coffee to consumers and businesses. During this process, he noticed that one of the biggest problems was that re-ordering coffee was a very time-based solution vs. a use-based solution. You either ended up with too much or too little coffee, and as you likely know, running out of coffee on a Sunday morning can be an emergency! I have a background in subscriptions and a degree in human-centered design, and when my husband talked about this problem and his recommended solution, I got really excited because we knew that this could provide a great solution to consumers. He and his business partners developed a “smart” solution to predict when you’ll run out of coffee, solely based on your consumption, and then prompt you to repurchase or replenish prior to running out – just when you’ll run out, so that you never run out and also so that you get to enjoy it at its peak freshness. The solution we came up with is SmartCanister. An internet of things solution that delivers the freshest roasted coffee to your doorstep just when you need it.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
We are really excited about the future of SmartCanister. As an internet of things company, we are initially focused on coffee, but in the future, all types of commodities and categories could be considered. We believe the subscription world is broken and think of this as a disruptor and subscription 2.0 business. Coffee is a produce product, so it’s important to get it at its peak freshness, and in the past year, more and more people are open to direct deliveries and grocery deliveries to their homes. We think the time is now for a solution like this. I’ve had a 20+ year career in retail and manufacturing with a focus on eCommerce. I was the 5th person on the eCommerce team at Eddie Bauer back in 1998, and I’ve been a digital native ever since. I have a deep passion for the end consumer, and I strongly believe that if you watch what consumers do, you’ll uncover areas that can deliver solutions and create a better experience for them. Putting the consumer at the center of all business activity will not only be better for the consumer but better for your company.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
As a sailor, my favorite areas of the city involve the water and being out on the water. Seeing the city from the water gives you a unique perspective and appreciation for the city and for the health of the water. We sail alongside whales, dolphins and seals on a regular basis, which inspires us to take care of the oceans and ecosystem around us. In 2017, I volunteered with the Sea Shepherd Conversation Society, spending nearly 3 months on board a 110′ Coast Guard Cutter. And the lesson this taught me is that if the oceans die, we die, so it’s critically important to take special interest in how we care for this important resource just outside of our doorstep.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My husband of 28 years, who is the CEO and Founder of SmartCanister – Kirby Watson
Yelp: Jodi W.