By his mid-30's, Davis Smith had co-founded two businesses. The first ended well, but the second was such a disappointment that he wondered if he should even bother trying again. But he did. In 2014, he launched Cotopaxi, an outdoor gear company with two fluffy llamas as mascots and an expressed mission to do good in the world. The brand is now making tens of millions of dollars a year, and Davis hopes that the current pandemic will not slow its ambitions to grow and to give back generously.
Interested in entrepreneurship? Join Davis Smith, Andrea Cabrera, and Parker Wilcox as they discuss the origins of Cotopaxi. Davis shares the importance of designing your company's culture and the importance of overcoming analysis paralysis.
Davis Smith, the founder of Cotopaxi.com talks about raising millions from VC’s to start his businesses, while maintaining a pledge for good to the world 0:29 – Introduction 1:12 – His first startup Pooltables.com 4:13 – Growing up in Latin America and world traveling 5:30 – Talking about taking risks and stepping into the business full-time 7:28 – His first business exit 9:00 – After selling his company he went to Wharton School of Business 12:55 – Raising venture money on Sandhill Road and starting baby.com.br 15:20 – Obstacles and surprises he faced with baby.com.br 20:19 – Meeting Edgar, the pivotal life changing moment while living in Peru 26:22 – Non profit vs profits for good 28:48 – Creating the Cotopaxi business model at 2am “The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul” Dieter Uchtdorf 30:42 – How to find and apply your inner creations and business models “It takes the same amount of time to build a hundred million dollar business as it does to build a one million dollar business” 32:16 – Closing the feedback loop 38:37 – Bootstrapping vs venture backed business 41:24 – The Questival, catapulting the Cotopaxi brand and awareness 44:06 – They are a benefit corporation set to give back for the life of the business 48:06 – His vision of the company in the future 50:40 – Davis’s 48 hour challenge Check out their cause and gear at www.cotopaxi.com
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