Natural Products Expo
Natural Products Business School Expo East 2017

Live from Expo East: Natural Products Business School

Join us from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 13 for a free livestream from Natural Products Expo East.

Natural Products Business School is a full day of learning designed to provide entrepreneurs with targeted, in-depth solutions to common business challenges and an opportunity to connect with a diverse ecosystem of service providers.



(All times EDT)

​8:23 a.m. - 8:30 a.m. Welcome

Rachael Shayne, Culture Architect & Brand Strategist 

8:30 a.m. - 9:00 a.m. Opening Inspiration

Koel Thomae, Noosa Yoghurt

9:00 a.m. - 9:45 a.m. Six Steps to an Effective, Retellable Story
To draw your customers, rally your investors, and build your key partnerships, you have to tell a good story. But what is a story, really, and how will yours be remembered and retold? Join Jay Golden, founder, storytelling coach and author of Retellable: How Your Essential Stories Unlock Power and Purpose, in an interactive exploration into how stories work, how they guide meaning, and how your own collection of essential stories can transform the world around you. 

Jay Golden, Retellable

9:45 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. Let's Be Real: Stories of Successful Impact Entrepreneurship 

Four years ago, Katlin Smith started Simple Mills with the goal of cleaning up the center aisles of the grocery stores.  Today, the brand is sold nationwide as the largest natural baking mix brand and one of the largest natural cracker brands.  However, getting there hasn’t always been smooth sailing.  In this session, Founder and CEO, Katlin Smith will discuss how the needs of entrepreneurs change as companies grow and what has made a difference in the company’s growth.

Katlin Smith, Simple Mills

10:00 a.m. - 10:40 a.m. Profit with Purpose: Creating a Measurable Mission-Based Business Plan 
What is your why? Businesses today can be both profitable and mission driven. Doing good by doing well. To successfully compete, you may need both! What kind of impact do you want to have? To create a clearly-articulated, measurable, mission-based plan, we need to first answer the why - before the who, what, when, where and how. Then we can create shared value with critical buy in, and leverage meaningful partnerships. Case studies with insights, advice and a check list of doable steps will be highlighted.

Terry Frishman, Culinest

​10:40 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. Mission Possible: Staying True in a Changing World

In 2017 Applegate, the nation’s leading natural and organic meat company, celebrates 30 years of “Changing the Meat We Eat.” Senior Director of Mission, Gina Asoudegan will discuss how the company’s mission has evolved over 30 years to meet the challenges of an ever-evolving marketplace.

Gina Asoudegan, Applegate

11:00 a.m. - 11:40 a.m. Fearless Fundraising: Understanding your Business Financials 
Entrepreneurs often try to raise money before they are ready to do so successfully. How much do you need and for what? What kind of money should you use and when? The result is often a lot of discouraging conversations and anxiety over meeting payroll. This session is designed to reset this dynamic entirely.  

Tera Johnson, Food Finance Institute + Tera's Whey

You'll leave understanding:

Financial Statements: what are they saying about the financial life of your business?
Growth Capital: how much capital do you need to grow, what kind, and when?
Perfect Presentation: how do you properly document requests for financing, make strong business assumptions and successfully raise money?

11:40 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Break - Livestream is offline

12:30 p.m. - 12:45 p.m. Passion Isn't Found, It is Nurtured
Do you want to do what you love 24/7 and also positively impact others? Join 16 year old integrative nutrition health coach, health activist, and CEO, Haile Thomas, for a dynamic conversation on nurturing passion & finding purpose + how you can incorporate your passions and social responsibility into your own ventures & dreams.

Haile Thomas, The HAPPY Organization

12:45 p.m. - 1:40 p.m. Brands Just Want to Have Fun(ds): Exploring the Funding Landscape
Join us in an intimate conversation centered around demystifying the "F" word. We'll hear from experts in crowdfunding, venture capital, asset-based lending, marketplace investing, incubation, acceleration and more! This action-packed 55 minutes will leave you with a deeper understanding of the vast and widely diverse capital options available to emerging brands.

Cheryl Clements, PieShell
Jessica Bates, Dwight Funding
Ross Davisson, CircleUp
Jackie Miller, Chobani
Zoe Feldman, Cleveland Avenue

1:40 p.m. – 2:25 p.m. What Does an Investor Really Want? 
In this interactive session, join us for a front row seat to better understand the relationship between a veteran entrepreneur and a seasoned investor. 

Mark Haas, Helmsman Group 
Jon Marshall, VMG
Mark Shaw, Avocado Studios

2:25 p.m. - 3:10 p.m. Pitfalls to Avoid When Raising Capital 

Jennifer Rosenthal, KO Firm
Carole Buyers, BIGR Ventures
Duane Primozich, BIGR Ventures

3:10 p.m. - 3:25 p.m. Networking Break - Livestream is offline

​3:25 p.m. - 3:45 p.m. Don't Go Alone: The Value of Mentorship + Finding your People

Rachael Shayne, Culture Architect & Brand Strategist
Jane Miller,

3:45 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. Impact Capitalism: Exiting Differently + New Ways to Think about Liquidity 

The session will highlight exit / liquidity options for impact founders with a special focus on how to preserve mission through your company’s most 
important financial transactions.  

Nancy Rosenzweig, Big Path Capital
Diana Propper de Callejon, Cranemere Inc.
Ralph Carlton, King Arthur Flour Company
Chuck Holt, InvestEco

4:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Breathe, Think + Do Like an Exponential Leader 
How can you achieve exponential growth and keep the lights on at the same time? This session will give you the leadership confidence you need to create value for your brand (and yourself). 

Jenelle Cobb, The Food + Health Collective


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