Press release: Bark Your Biz
Bark Your Biz, the only pet industry entrepreneur pitch competition, was held on Wednesday, March 20 at the Global Pet Expo in Orlando, Florida. Bark Your Biz is hosted by Anthony and Amanda Bennie, the 22-time award-winning founders of Clear Conscience Pet, based in Cape Coral, Florida. The program is chiefly sponsored by CCP and their SuperGravy holistic pet food topper gravy and broth mixes.
The “Best Barker” Award went to Emily Stein, PhD. Dr. Stein presented her TEEF brand of patented anti-plaque dental supplements for dogs and was assisted by co-founder Lindsey Campbell. “It was an honor to be recognized as the Top Barker,” said Stein. “We enjoyed participating in Bark Your Biz and meeting the expert panelists and innovative start-ups this year.”
Tied for First “Runner Pups” were Rockster Pet Foods and Yak-9 Chews. Rockster won for their line of “bio-organic” sous vide pet foods being introduced to the North American market from Europe. The line was presented by co-founder Zoe Ley.
K9 Corp. was chosen for their new line of Yak-9 dog chews made in Nepal with novel ingredients such as turmeric, hemp and salmon skin. Yak-9 is committed to bettering the lives of the villagers who raise the Yaks and craft the traditional hard cheese. The line was presented by founder and CEO Pukar Pyakurel.
Second “Runner Pups” were as follows:
- Walkee Paws waterproof leggings for dogs, presented by founder and CEO Lisa Baronoff
- Pet Krewe pet costumes and tie-dye kits, including licensed lines depicting Sesame Street characters and NCAA Mascots, presented by founder and CEO Allison Albert
- Kitchen Dog wall mounted pet feeding systems, presented by founder Terry Kasper
- Addison Pet Yards, a retail concept that reclaimed empty commercial space in Texas to create a mini mall of independent pet care businesses, presented by founder Roger DiGregori
- Animal Essentials, makers of holistic herbal tinctures and natural supplements, presented by founder and herbalist Greg Tilford, a twenty-three-year natural pet business veteran
All winners are eligible for consults with the Bark Your Biz expert panel as well as vouchers for discounts from other service providers. The panel consisted of Phil Chang, retailing expert and the founder of Retail Phil; BC Henschen, the founder of Platinum Paws and Candace D’Agnolo, founder and CEO of The Pet Boss Nation.
“We had a great event for our third BYB program, and we are very grateful for the APPA and Global Pet Expo management for inviting us to produce the event live at the show,” said Bark Your Biz producer Anthony Bennie. “The lineup of companies was terrific, and as usual, it was tough to choose the winners,” said co-creator Amanda Malone-Bennie.
Asked why they would devote time to promoting new companies when they are brand owners themselves, the hosts opined that today’s new companies face a tough challenge entering the pet industry: “It’s harder than ever to get noticed because of the saturation effect,” said Bennie, “so we cooked up Bark Your Biz to give back to our industry and level the playing field a bit.”
“Bark Your Biz is a pet business welcome wagon,” said Malone-Bennie. “The Barkers get candid but kind feedback from the panel, and we work hard to make it a fun and purposeful experience.”
Podcasts and You Tube videos will be released after editing has been completed. Those interested in future events or co-sponsorships are encouraged to contact the hosts; more information is available at the Bark Your Biz website.