I am a little bit obsessed. Which is exactly what Elizabeth Cutler, Julie Rice, Denise Mari and Holly Thaggard want me to be.
These four women are founders of three great companies whose terrific products make my life a little bit better, easier, happier and healthier. And they do it with flare, smarts and style--which, naturally, I love. It keeps me--and many others--coming back for more. Cutler and Rice co-founded New York-based spinning studios, SoulCycle, Mari founded raw, organic, vegan food purveyor, Organic Avenue, and Thaggard created sensitive skin-, workout-friendly sunscreen Supergoop!.
What they share: each has identified their one thing--creating an exceptional spinning experience, flavorful, healthy food, safe sun protection--and they execute against it relentlessly, flawlessly, holistically--obsessively. From SoulCycle's high-energy teachers to its logo-embossed bikes, from Organic Avenue's consistently delicious juices to its brightly-colored delivery rickshaws, from Supergoop!'s anti-oxidant-infused wipes to their bright, yellow packaging, every detail is carefully considered.
What this creates: an ability to charge premium prices and grow at a rapid clip through a recession. SoulCycle's classes are $32.00 a session, a bottle of Organic Avenue juice is $10.00, a basic tube of Supergoop! sunscreen is $22.00. Since the start of 2010 SoulCycle has opened three studios with another coming next month, Organic Avenue will soon open its next New York outpost at Fifth Avenue and 8th Street and Supergoop! is quickly expanding into Europe and Australia.
What I also love: that these three companies are founded, led by women.
A few of my favorite products? While I have never walked out of a SoulCycle session disappointed, for me, classes with Kym, Clare, MB and Kaili are always stand-out. Organic Avenue's Young LOVE and Veggie Vibrance juices, Portobello Reuben Wraps and Blueberry Spirulina Smoothies are my repeat buys. And I swear by Supergoop!'s wipes and spray.
A CNBC clip from earlier this week, The SoulCycle Craze, featuring conversation with Elizabeth Cutler and Julie Rice is here. A MindBodyGreen interview with Denise Mari, discussing Organic Avenue's raw food cleansing programs, is here. And an interview with Holly Thaggard is here--it's a touch dated, but in it she discusses not only the evolution of Supergoop!'s business strategy, but also the process of initial product development and funding--worthwhile.
Finally, full disclosure: Holly's brother--who is an investor in Supergoop!--and I are friends. Through him I've met Holly on her trips to New York from her home in Texas. Early on in the life of the company, I received a few samples--I've paid full-price ever since. Holly just tipped me to her newest product, the face serum--developed in conjunction with a Sydney-based skincare lab--looks fabulous, naturally, but I haven't tried it yet.