After years of food product development, Juan’s dream of creating a product that really was as healthy as it claimed, came true. Juan had a deep background in developing snack foods, but becoming a business owner, financial forecaster and manufacturing expert was a different story!

 

My Challenges: 

Juan felt that he needed help in so many areas, yet he didn’t want to devote a lot of capital to hire various experts. He specifically recognized the need for a finance expert. Like many entrepreneurs, he had questions regarding how to be profitable and how to use financial tracking tools to determine critical details, such as how many units he needed to sell to break even. While they began their mentor-mentee relationship, Peter clarified the various components to consider in calculating what was needed to sustain a profit. 

How SCORE Helped: 

Juan and Peter soon realized the need to add marketing expertise. Fortunately, SCORE Northwest has a mentor with a background in marketing food products, so they brought in Vinita Devale. Juan and Vinita worked on who they should go after – big and little stores, e-commerce - and the tactics needed to attract consumers to buy the product.

Like many SCORE clients, Juan couldn’t believe that this amount of knowledge was available for free. Most likely, to find this same amount of time and expertise would have cost a great deal of money, which is tough for a startup to commit to. Working with Peter helped him allocate his money and get the cash to pay for business needs. Now his product is getting into retailers such as the Vitamin Shoppe, Home Goods, Shop Rite, large distributors and Amazon.com.

My Successes: 

Dr. Juan Salinas launched P-nuff Crunch in March of 2017. The delicious and nutritious peanut snack can be found online atAmazon.com and in several retail stores in the Northeast.

After years of food product development, Juan’s dream of creating a product that really was as healthy as it claimed, came true. Juan had a deep background in developing snack foods, but becoming a business owner, financial forecaster and manufacturing expert was a different story!

As a new startup, Juan searched the web for effective business plan templates and struck gold at the SCORE website. SCORE’s business plan template guided him to address all aspects of his business. At the time, he thought SCORE was a great business resource but didn’t realize that there were people with a wide variety of expertise behind the scenes, ready to help.

What's Great About My Mentor?: 

Juan says that as an entrepreneur, you have so many questions because no one person has expertise in every field. With minimal expertise in the financial area, prior to discovering SCORE, this was one area that brought him stress. While working with Peter, what appeared so complicated was now made clear; it was easy to see what key areas needed focus, what had to be done and what had to change so that the company could profit in the near future. With a background in financial projections, Peter created a customized spreadsheet that made it easy to play around with “what if” scenarios throughout the lifetime of the company.

Peter’s tool focused on elements Juan could control to change the results (price, timing, cost, manpower, waste). The spreadsheet allows Juan to play with lowering the price or running the machines faster or lowering the cost of materials so that the algorithms can yield the results of those decisions. This allowed them to predict what would happen before it happens.

 

 

My Mentors