Can you please tell us a little bit about yourself and your product?
My name is Michael Stausholm, I am the founder and CEO of Sprout. Three years ago I founded Sprout after having made an agreement with the inventors of the plantable Sprout pencil, a group of MIT students. They got the task of designing the sustainable office product of tomorrow. And came up with the idea of a plantable and sustainable pencil with a capsule containing seeds in the end. When your pencil is too short to write with, you simply plant it and give it a new life. You can grow herbs, flowers or vegetables from the pencils.
How did you grow your business?
80% of our clients are companies and organisations that get their logo engraved and use the pencils as green giveaways. We sell to over 60 countries and have clients like IKEA, Disney, Bank of America, Coca Cola and many more. We grow the business by focusing on key markets, first Europe, then the US and now we are trying to get into the Middle East where sustainability also plays a big role. Our pencils are patented in most countries which is very important in our business.
What do you want to do next?
Apart from plantable pencils we also make plantable paper and use it for our clients needs; business cards, door hangers, gift cards, coffee cards, golf cards, conference programs, menu cards that can grow into flowers.
Where do you see your company in 5 years time?
We want to be a world leader within sustainable and sprouting products. Our mission is to help companies taking a step in the right direction towards reducing waste and taking better care of our planet. We all have to start somewhere. Our pencil is a symbol of sustainability because it turns into something else instead of ending up in the trash. We want people to ask; if I can plant a pencil and recycle it, what else can I do?