JORDAN KARCHER SAVES dogs and sells coffee at the same time. Not exactly an intuitive business plan, but the entrepreneur has built his niche company into millions of dollars in sales and has attracted top-level investors. And he owes much of it to his Craigslist couch-selling skills.
Karcher found inspiration for his Grounds & Hounds coffee brand in an adorable pooch he’d spotted by the side of the road. While living in L.A. in his mid-twenties, and working in the wine and spirits world after an injury in college ended his baseball career, Karcher was headed to breakfast in Santa Monica. An animal adoption pop-up center caught his eye, and within minutes, “a little brown and white Dalmatian came up on my lap and tucked her nose in my jacket,” he says. “Little did I know she would soon be my best friend.”
Molly is also the “co-founder” and face of Grounds & Hounds, beaming proudly from its smart-looking houndstooth-patterned packaging.
$1.2 MILLION IN COFFEE
Officially launched in 2014, Grounds & Hounds sells fair-trade organic coffee, diverting 20% of initial profits to no-kill animal rescue organizations and related projects. There are no physical stores; it’s direct-to-consumer for now. It’s also become a surprisingly booming business: Dog owners, of course, drink coffee, but over the past four years they’ve come out in droves for Karcher&rsq