Top Shelf Cookies is growing
And we're gonna need some help from friends
Nine years ago, it was a game day superstition.
Six years ago, it became a little company with the goal of bringing Boston (and beyond) a better cookie. We started with $2500 and a dream. My dream of making really good cookies. Using really good and sometimes unusual ingredients and crafting the best recipes and if I can come up with a reference to the city I love and call home, all the better.
We started our business out of a shared use incubator space : CommonWealth Kitchen in Dorchester. We started out just doing special orders, then we pulled in farmers markets and events, we added our online store and eventually started to wholesale finished cookies to specialty grocers and then frozen dough to local colleges and restaurants.
We started 2020 with the vision of thinking bigger and not living tent event to tent event. It has been a long standing plan to get a home of our own. 2020 has been a challenging year for all of us, when COVID19 hit, it we lost 80% of our planned revenue for March and April, we weren't sure we would survive. Most of the cancellations came while we were looking for spaces. We couldn't responsibly engage in negotiations as the Commonwealth was shutting things down, we has lost all our events and most of our standing wholesale orders.
We faced COVID19 straight on (after initial panic) we kept our staff employed. We would have to rely mostly on our online channel to survive. Then the city we know and love came through for us. Slow and steady wasn't our speed as we faced a huge spike in online orders. Our cookies were a good comfort to people and a way to connect. The messages we got with our orders were encouraging, uplifting and reminded us who we are. There's no quit in Top Shelf Cookies. We saw an increase in sales over last year despite not being able to do our traditional events.
So, we went back to that perfect little spot and we're negotiating a lease for a home of our own.
Our new home will allow us to serve Boston (and beyond) in ways we haven't been able to before.
- Retail - when you want cookies, you can just come get them
- Deliveries - with a home base that is staffed consistently we can work with delivery service providers
- WARM Cookies - you think they smell good when you open the bag, you should smell them right out of the oven!
- Flavored Milk Bar - chocolate, coffee, strawberry - we can make your milk and cookies pairings endless!
- Ice Cream Cookie Sandwiches - our cookies, locally made ice cream
- Cookie Frappes - yeah, just you wait
- More experimental flavors - with our own space and our imaginations it should be fun
- Shipping more regularly - changing our shipping schedule has not been a fun part of social distancing
- Creating Jobs - since we'll have a home base, we'll need to hire some more staff.
We need to move into our space for the fall to give us the best chance at maintaining our growth into the holiday season, where we typically do 30-35% of our business for the year. In order to move quickly, we chose a crowdfunding platform to help us to raise capital. This is not a donation, this is an investment and you can get a financial return on it!
We just launched an investment campaign on Mainvest. You can quickly go onto their secure and easy-to-use platform, and make an investment in Top Shelf Cookies for as little as $100