March 9th, 2010 11:33 EST
Judyth Piazza, Heather Kenzie and Jennifer Love Discuss NibMor Chocolate
Heather Kenzie has been cooking for years while pursuing her acting career in NYC. She hails from Chicago (Go White Sox!) but lives in NYC with her boyfriend and their dog Ike.
Jennifer Love has been immersed in nutrition, holistic methods and the wellness industry for years while pursuing her career as a serial entrepreneur and business consultant. She`s from California, but found home to be NY with her cat Snicker`s and her love for NY`ers.
January 2009: Heather Kenzie and Jennifer Love meet in the lobby of Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center. They are both attending classes at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and have brown-bagged lunch. They strike up a friendly and informational conversation about tools for sprouting seeds and exchange contact information.
February 2009: Days and weeks pass without Heather and Jennifer running into each other, though Heather buys the sprouter Jennifer recommended. It works quite well. She has lots of mung bean sprouts but not even a thought about chocolate.
March 2009: Jennifer contacts Heather about getting some like minds together. They all go out to lunch during a class weekend. At this lunch Jennifer asks Heather if she wants to go to a chocolate " party. Heather has no idea what that is, but agrees to go anyway.
Jennifer and Heather go to the chocolate party the following evening and have a blast! They both get hit on by raw food hippies (by the way, for those of you who don`t know, raw food hippies are HOT!). It`s a great night and they create a bond.
Post chocolate " party, Heather wants more raw chocolate! She goes into a health food store in Manhattan. She searches. She finds! Hooray! Raw, vegan, no refined sugar, dairy-free chocolate happiness! But wait. What`s THAT?! She squints her eyes. She tilts her head. That can`t possibly be right! This chocolate costs how much?! $9-$12 a bar for 2oz or less?! She panics. She breaks out in a cold sweat. She NEEDS that chocolate. She happens to turn her head-and it`s sitting there magically on the shelf, cacao butter. She immediately gets on her blackberry and searches for raw chocolate recipes. She buys the ingredients. Game on baby! Her craving will be conquered!
Heather goes home and makes some raw chocolate. It`s not bad. She decides to try again and change a few things "
More time passes
April 2009: Heather starts to feel pretty confident in what she is producing out of her kitchen. She starts passing it out to clients and to people she`s working with. People really like this stuff!
Heather calls up Jennifer and asks her if she wants to have dinner one night to try the chocolate. They meet for dinner and Jennifer is eager to jump right in before they even eat! She`s a true chocolate enthusiast! Jennifer takes a bite while Heather anxiously watches. Jennifer pauses a moment and looks Heather right in the eye and says, We have to do this. " The journey begins!
After some taste-testing on colleagues, friends and family, adjusting the recipe, readjusting the recipe and altering it again and again "the perfect recipe is created. (Thanks to all those who gave us valuable feedback.)
Jennifer and Heather start moving and shaking! They decide they want to officially launch the company in July. That gives them only 10 weeks! Heather has no clue how much work this takes; Jennifer smartly does not inform her.
The gals need a name! What will they call this yummy stuff? They think long and hard, friends chime in. Ideas are spilled out and twirled around. Jennifer starts playing around with key words she and Heather have put together. She calls Heather and says, What do you think of Nibbles and Morsels? "
H: Kind of Toll House, don`t you think? "
J: Yeah. I`m looking through go-daddys domain name search " NibblesandMorsels.com, nibblemore.com, nibmor.com, nibblewibbleworld.com " "
H: "Whoa. Wait. Back up a second. What`s wrong with NibMor? "
J: I like it! "
H: That`s just it. I kind of like it too! Like-
J: Nibble More but shortened. It gives you permission to enjoy our food from a health conscious reference. Yeah! I could get on board with that! NibMor. NibMor Chocolate. NibMor Snacks. "
(A chocolate NIB is the center of the cacao bean and the essence of all chocolate.)
NibMor was born!
May 2009: The gals are really doing it! They`ve found their commercial kitchen space, filed their business with the state, decided what the logo, packaging and bars are going to look like (this required going into Whole Foods and buying every chocolate bar on the shelf to do some market research. Sugar headaches and bellyaches all around!) Jennifer explains that they need an attorney. Every business does, especially one with partners (she`s a savvy business chick!) Jennifer starts looking and sets up a few meetings.
Jennifer walks into the attorney`s office for an initial meeting. She knows he is the right man for the job when he walks up and shakes her hand while wearing a white suit and hat (very Miami of him) to then move into a conversation about women`s shoes. Just too much fun! Not to mention "he does great work. A month later when Heather meets this man she bursts into a fit of giggles and exclaims, You`ve found us the PERFECT lawyer! "
During this time the girls have started seriously thinking about money. They decide to apply for several loans. In the failing economy no one is willing to support this small start up company, even with Jennifer`s extremely meticulous and well-thought out business plan. She SLAVED over this document and completed it in record time! The gals have a chat. Jennifer has some savings from her consulting company; Heather has some savings from her last few commercial gigs. They decide to apply for a few small lines of credit and sink their savings in. Family and friends cheer on!
June 2009: The heat is on! Actually, for summer in NYC it`s cool and rains all but 6 days of the month of June but the NibMor gals are on fire!
The girls decide that they should have a party to announce NibMor. Heather proceeds to handmake 250 invitations. In the meantime Jennifer is going business hog wild! She contacts Venge Vineyards in CA and they agree to sponsor the party and graciously provide wine for the evening. She sets up the NibMor phone system, opens bank accounts, sets up the accounting and sales systems...the list goes on and on. The business gold star goes to JLove! It`s all coming together! The weeks fly by. What?! It`s July? How did that happen!?
July 2009: Oh Boy. Big month. July 1st means they have 9 days left to get this all set up. They have planned a party for 100 people.
The girls hire staff. While Heather is a chocolate making machine in the kitchen with staff, Jennifer hustles to complete the work for the website and finalize party details. Media, successful friends, famous colleagues, and those close to the girls are invited to the party.
The day comes and it`s a success! NibMor is here!
Two days later the gals are standing in the backstage area of the Beacon Theater in NYC relating the NibMor story to 1500+ of their fellow classmates. NibMor is now officially out to the public!
If you have a store, close to you, that you would like NibMor to be sold, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Stay tuned for what the NibMor Gals are up to...