NovaXyon Entrepreneurial CEREAL ENTREPRENEUR a brand new Forbes interview collection with Eric Ryan

CEREAL ENTREPRENEUR a brand new Forbes interview collection with Eric Ryan


Good morning to a new Forbes interview series (over cereal) with CEOs, thought leaders and entrepreneurs

It’s been nearly 25 years since I co-founded Method, an eco-friendly line of soaps, out of a small, fairly dirty apartment in San Francisco. I’d dreamed of disrupting giants like SC
Johnson and Proctor & Gamble. In 2007, Method did more than $100 million in revenue and, well, we later exited to SC Johnson.

The sale was a big deal both personally and professionally. But a deep sadness set in. I couldn’t figure out why or worse how to shake it. Finally, it hit me: Since selling Method, the risk—the thrill!—was gone. I was an entrepreneur with no preneur. And I started to wonder: Could I do it again? What if I’d just gotten lucky? It wasn’t until I committed myself to that next venture, Olly Nutrition, that the dark clouds parted.

Fighting Imposter Syndrome

In 2019, I sold that company to Unilever. But I can tell you that imposter syndrome is real. That’s one of the topics I’m excited to cover in a new interview series I’m doing here for Forbes with journalist Mickey Rapkin, who’s written for Fast Company, WSJ and GQ. (He also has maybe the best cocktail party anecdote: He wrote the book Pitch Perfect which inspired the movie franchise.) We’re calling our show Cereal Entrepreneur and it’s a series of casual conversations—over bowls of cereal—with CEOs, thought leaders and entrepreneurs about their journeys. We’ll go deep on their wins, losses, and personal anxieties to answer the question: How do you make success repeatable?

Season One

We’ve lined up a murderer’s row of inspiring guests. Over the next six weeks, we’ll break bread—or Cheerios or Lucky Charms or some direct-to-consumer cereal—with Sweetgreen
co-founder Nicolas Jammet, who helped build that brand from a single salad stop in Georgetown to an empire with more than 200 locations nationwide and counting. (Sweetgreen nearly folded in year one, he tells us, and you’ll want to hear why.)

We’ve also got an interview with Shea Moisture founder Richelieu Dennis, who sold Sundial Brands to Unilever in 2017 for $1.6 billion dollars and bought Essence Magazine a few days later. He’s got a lot to say about closing the racial wealth gap. (Speaking of great cocktail party anecdotes, he’s got one involving D-Nice that we’re still laughing about weeks later.) Plus, we’ll sit down with Justin Kosmides, co-founder of the hip e-bike brand Vela, who details why he just moved his operations from China to Detroit (and the unlikely role Wal-Mart played in that decision). We also chatted with Jeff Raider (who helped launch both Warby Parker and Harry’s) and the founders of Blank Street Coffee, Vinay Menda and Issam Freiha.

There’s much more to come. New installments of Cereal Entrepreneur will drop every Tuesday for the next six weeks. But you can get a first look by clicking on our trailer above.

A Call To Action

I launched Method, Olly and Welly Health—which collectively have an enterprise valuation of more than $1 billion dollars. I’m now working on two new startups: Cast Jewelry (a luxury jewelry brand) and Will Perform, a pain relief and muscle care business with Serena Williams. But in many ways I’m still learning every single day. My co-host, Mickey, is similarly curious. And our guests responded with a master class in entrepreneurship. We’d love for you to grab a bowl of cereal and join us on this ride.


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