Join the second installment of ICA’s Peer2Peer series on the in-and-outs of getting into retail. In this session your fellow ICA entrepreneurs will talk about what their journey has been like getting their products into major retailers and what happens after the products hit the shelf. Come prepared with your questions for the open Q&A portion of the panel. This Peer2Peer workshop is for ICA alumni.
Peer2Peer: Getting your product into retail stores
When: Friday, March 31st, 10-11am
Register: Sign up here.
Maria Palacio, co-founder of Progeny Coffee
Maria Jose Palacio, a fifth-generation Colombian coffee farmer who was born and raised in a famous coffee region in Colombia. After several years working in the design field in New York City, Maria decided to change careers and return to coffee in 2016 after seeing her friends and family in Colombia struggle to maintain a viable living through their coffee farms. Maria’s passion for uplifting others helped her to overcome small business obstacles and build a flourishing business as a distribution platform with the mission of empowering coffee farmers and lifting them out of poverty and helping their communities. Maria believed that Progeny needed to bring in education and entrepreneurship to these communities.
Stevonne Ratliff, founder of Beija Flor Naturals
Founded by Stevonne Ratliff in 2012, Beija-Flor Naturals is one of the first online retailers to offer natural beauty products designed by and for Black Women online. With a few hundred dollars, Ratliff began formulating and manufacturing skin and hair goodies out of her kitchen. From the launch, Beija-Flor Naturals fostered a cult-like following of early "influencers", loyal customers, organic media and sales. Women of Color have historically had limited options and the Beija-Flor Naturals line became a breath of fresh air in the beauty industry by delivering products with high end, clean ingredients for Black Women. Beija-Flor Naturals customers have been retailers and individuals worldwide in places as far away as Greece, Australia and South Korea. Named "Best in Green Beauty" by Byrdie Magazine, Beija-Flor Naturals has been featured in publications such as Vogue, Elle, San Francisco Magazine and the New York Times. As of Spring 2023 Beija-Flor Naturals products has gained distribution in 671 JCP Beauty x thirteen lune stores nationwide; with more national retailers to follow.
As a Bay Area native, Ratliff was excited to open a brick and mortar retailer, Concept Forty-Seven, that sold the Beija-Flor Naturals product line and curated goods from 100+ independent markers, artists and artisans. For 8 years, Concept Forty-Seven has supported local and Black owned businesses in two locations (SF/OAK) and regularly hosted community events such as live music, donation based yoga and book signings.
Charlotte Walter, founder of Charlotte’s Truffles
Charlotte Walter is the owner and chocolatier of Charlotte Truffles, an artisanal confection brand that sparks cultural curiosity and connections through classical cultural flavors as they were traditionally meant to be, but with a twist—in chocolate.