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Shot Caller: A Podcast by Shannon Sagawe

Aug 27, 2021

Early pandemic, March 2020, Martica Wakeman found herself without a job and a bit shaken by this experience.  She quickly reacted to her circumstances by networking extensively to find like-minded people and job opportunities, as well as throwing herself into social work, something she has a long history of.  Working at a local soup kitchen in San Fransisco was a great way to give back but also recognize that her problems were fairly insignificant to many others around her. 

Martica was introduced to Miles Pepper, inventor and entrepreneur who co-founded Final Straw in 2017.  Miles had already started designing a concept for Sanikind and the two of them immediately saw an opportunity to work together to create a meaningful and impactful company to address single use hand sanitizer.  Thus Sanikind was born, in the middle of a pandemic. 

Miles' experience with Final Straw meant he had experience with a very successful Kickstarter campaign as well as manufacturing contacts for recycled plastic pellets.  Miles and Final Straw had raised $2 million for his collapsable straw.  This meant they could get up and running with fundraising and production design quite quickly.   

By August 2021, they had raised $317,736 from Kickstarter contributions and were able to launch their first product by November of 2020!  That is no easy feat in the middle of global lockdowns due to a rampant pandemic.  Passion and Action mobilized! 

Hear how valuable the Kickstarter community was to their product design and development, how no product is truly "sustainable," but you can be a "responsible" business.  

We discuss her entrepreneurial inspirations; Swell Water Bottle and Blueland! Two amazing companies with two inspiring entrepreneurs; giving consumers a chance to make positive environmental choices.

I also have a moan about how unbelievably unresponsible and unsustainable my former favourite company Bath & Body Works is.  When I delved into their recycling program, I was woefully disappointed and truthfully sick to my stomach. How many of these 1oz. mini hand sanitzers get thrown away a day?  They have 1600 stores in the US.  My god, the scale of virgin, non recyclable plastic that this company is contributing to makes me super angry.  Here is a look into a report on their grade as a company from a CSR perspective. (Corporate Social Responsibility)

Martica discusses the concept of "good debt" vs. "bad debt," and how getting her MBA and Masters in Sustainability were excellent examples of important investments she made in herself.  

She highlights how critical the state of our oceans are and what we do matters. Sanikind has recently started to start collaborating with corporates as well as other eco-conscious influencers such as Echobabe Monica Richards.

We hit upon some other interesting topics:

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