My name is Ed Soehnel and I work in the early-stage and lower-middle-market (0-$50MM in annual revenue ) CPG, FMCG and consumer product marketplace. With partners, I took one company to $100 million, another to $50 million and 32,000 retail outlets, a third to $25 million, and a fourth that is niche focused in 6-figures. Previous to these companies, I sold one technology company, crashed two others, and built a new division for an existing company. In between all this, I’ve worked on so many other ideas that I have lost count and have done extensive mentoring and advising.
The genesis for Basecamp InQb8r was 2008, when I began writing online on my personal website at EdSoehnel.com and on Quora about strategies and tactics for consumer product startups. Writing was a way for me to clarify my thoughts and became part of my knowledgebase so I did not have to keep everything in my head.
In 2012, I came up with the concept of incorporating and expanding upon my online content into an online platform, modeled like a business incubator that would serve as an efficient way to help startups develop, launch and grow, while also serving as a leads generator to give me advising opportunities, consulting and employment work, and investment prospects.
In 2015, I began to work more earnestly on learning and implementing data science in my pet company. My own interest and skill sets lean heavily towards being data driven and technology intensive, so what I learned and developed in my pet company has greatly influenced my ideas for products and services offered through Basecamp InQb8r that are focused on data and data science.
In 2017, I published the first iteration of Basecamp InQb8r.
But the original goal of having an online platform modeled like a business incubator with active community-level participation from early-stage startups was not well received.
Feedback from startups indicated that they really just wanted the intelligence and did not care to participate in an online community of consumer product startups.
So I pivoted the platform to serve as a repository of curated consumer product business intelligence, available via a paid subscription model with professional services layered on top.
As a consumer product entrepreneur, Basecamp InQb8r currently has most of what I would be looking for in a consumer product business intelligence platform to help me develop, launch and grow, including:
- Education that teaches me the comprehensive basics to develop, launch and grow a consumer product company, while also staying current with industry and marketplace practices;
- A knowledge board that has current strategies and tactics working in the marketplace that I can include in my company, while also helping me stay abreast of key news and trends;
- Data on other consumer product startups and companies so I can see how I compare and potentially model in my company;
- A list of curated resources I can tap to help me grow, including additional education sources, mentors/advisors, investors, vendors, distribution sources, events and more.
- Ability to speak with an expert to get specific questions answered and one-on-one advice.
But an early significant benefit from this pivot to a consumer product business intelligence platform included being approached by other consumer product marketplace participants. They wanted to utilize my business intelligence platform and consulting services to help them understand, navigate and profit from the early-stage/small startups ($0-2MM) and lower-middle-market ($2MM-$50MM) consumer product marketplace. As a result, I have extended the platform so that it can also help investors, vendors, manufacturers, service providers, government, non-profits and news media.