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An ecommerce exit in the $150B+ supplements market


Think about the supplement market. It’s ridiculously competitive and cutthroat, so would you really want to start an ecommerce business in that space? According to Grandview Research, the global sports nutrition and dietary supplement space is a whopping $152B! So if a company could get just an infinitesimal fraction of that market, that company could do quite well. Our guest today is someone who started with no experience in supplements, no experience selling a physical product, and no knowledge of even how to find a copacker. And yet, he made it!

Today’s episode of Deal Closers is hosted by Jason Gillikin, brought to you by, and is produced by Earfluence.


Mike: The deal is not just what’s on paper, but it’s also how it’s gonna affect your lifestyle. I mean, do I want to be worrying about the new owner, how they’re running the business for two years when I no longer have any control, you know, and they’re holding back a considerable amount of money, that’s something where I’ve gotta like the buyer, I’ve gotta trust them.

Jason Gillikin:You’re listening to Deal Closers, brought to you by, a show about how to build your ecommerce business to be profitable, scalable, and one day, even sellable. 


I’m Jason Gillikin, and on the show today, Website Closers Brian Tumpane and I talk to someone who got into ecommerce because he wanted to change his lifestyle and stop making other people money.


According to Grandview Research, the global sports nutrition and dietary supplement space is a whopping $152B. Yes, Billion with a B.  If a company could get 1 hundredth of 1 percent – not 1 percent, not 1 tenth of 1 percent – 1 hundredth of 1 percent – that company would have $15.2 Million in Sales.


Jason Gillikin: Let’s keep that in mind as we bring on our guest today. He didn’t want us to use his real name so we’re going to call him Mike.


Mike was at a spot in his career where he needed something different, and the idea of working for someone again…well, that didn’t really work for him.


Mike: I’ve been fired from every job I’ve ever had. I don’t, I, I, I don’t like collaborative work environments, so I don’t, I I’ve I prefer a dictatorship. only half joking, but yeah, I, I, I, I’ve always preferred to live and die by my own decisions. I’ll happily regret the bad ones and take the wins on the good ones. And I’ve, yeah, I, I don’t like dealing with other people’s stuff good or bad.

Mike had worked in TV throughout his career, and although it felt glamorous at times, it could also be pretty exhausting


There was a lot of travel, but I have two young kids and travel when you’re doing it for somebody else is not as fun when you’re doing for yourself. And I thought, well, what can I do that ticks a lot of those boxes, I guess that a lot of guys and girls my age are looking for that financial freedom, you know, and it distills down to sell something physical. I wanted obviously to have reoccurring revenue while I was asleep, it was all that kind of classic Tim Ferriss stuff that we all read and listen to, that we all want to be. And that happened to coincide with this idea that I, I wanted to move towards a, a, more of a vegan kind of diet.

So I started shopping around in stores for products, good quality protein powders. And I realized from my background in food, that as much as they all said they’re clean none of them really were. And I thought, gee, there might be something here. So I called up a few kinds of co packers and formulating companies. And they were very responsive in a way that first call was, it was the scariest. Cause you know, you don’t wanna come off like an idiot, which I was. But they’re all very helpful and all, very, you know, looking forward to help somebody like me out. 

And I thought, well, you know, this is a minimum outlay to get into the supplements business on one product, five grand, I can afford to lose five grand. And one area where I drew some confidence against it, is that in television you’re really, you know, you’re, it’s, it’s a, its marketing, you’re selling, but your product is emotionally.

And I thought, well, a lot of that’s probably applicable to this, but I’m selling a physical product, but you’re still ultimately selling a mindset and a goal and a feeling, certainly a result. so I found that a lot of the skills carried over, you know, a lot of the graphics, a lot of the writing, a lot of storytelling around the brand.

And so I, I liked that space. So weirdly it didn’t seem like a big risk probably because, you know, I’m, I’m a big fan of failure. You know, I, I, I have a bit of a personal adage that I in life, I tend to run towards the things I’m scared of because they’re the things that bring you the most joy once you pass them. So, yeah, I, I I’m okay with a bit of failure.

Jason: now how did you even know how to contact like a co-packer like that, that doesn’t seem easy to do.

Mike: Yeah, I Google, you know, private, private label manufacturer, this, that, and the other. And I called a few and, and frankly, I ended up landing on until to this day, even this was my case, when I met Brian, is, is I just let my gut tell me. Frankly, a large part of it is, is who has the patience to talk to you?

Who, who genuinely do you genuine get a genuine sense that they’re willing to invest and hour of speaking to you, asking very naive questions, and that’s enough for me. And I found the right guy for me. And, yeah, that was it. It’s just, can I work with you?

Jason: Yeah. Yeah. I imagine you had to be like, I don’t know what questions to be asking here, but I’m just gonna start, start asking and, and see where it goes., What? Okay. So when you were looking at the supplements, the vegan supplements, and you said like the ingredients, weren’t great. Like, what were you talking about there?

Like what, what what’s in it that’s, you know, it’s, it’s all vegan. So the, the thought is that it’s probably fine, but you knew that it wasn’t healthy. Why.

Mike: For any of your listeners who are familiar with the supplement space, they’ll know there is good and there’s bad, but most of it’s this gray middle area where the ingredients aren’t really bad, but they’re not necessarily clean. So for me, I was looking for things that you’ve probably read a million times like xanthan, lecithin, guar wire gum. These are additives that don’t hurt you, but they don’t, in my opinion, constitute a really clean product.

So even forms of sugar, you know, stevia and other sweetening agents, I thought, well, I really wanted to build a product that was legitimately clean. And if you wanna add something sweet, or something to, you know, make it less grainy, then I’ll leave that up to you. But I wanted to be able to make a certain claim that this is the cleanest vegan protein on the market.

And I, I think I delivered it. So that was really the mindset is just to offer something niche. I knew I wouldn’t tick every box. I knew it was not gonna be a home run and. It was gonna make me tens of millions of dollars, but I knew that it would find an audience cuz I thought, well, if I’d be interested in this, there’s probably other people that might be.

Jason: Okay. So how did you test it out? are you going through these, these formulas and, and all that? Or at what point were you like Oh, this is actually pretty good?

Mike: well we went through about 25 different formulations and 23 tasted like shit. And which I thought was fine. I mean, I mean, at least it’s clean. And that was the tradeoff. I, I actually thought in the end, I thought, you know, the audience that’ll go and eat this is an audience that actually wants to eat fruit and vegetables.

So, you know, there’s so many protein powders now you go into these stores and you see protein powders that taste like a kid’s birthday cake or a chocolate donut. And I thought this is not gonna be my audience, but I only need, my mindset was always, you know, if I can get .001% of those three massive brands that we all know that’s enough for me.

I mean, that’s a living for a little guy like me with no expenses. So that was always, my mindset is, is make a promise, make the promise true, like have an ingredient label that could withstand legitimate scrutiny, and that’s enough. You know, is there enough brand there to, to kind of build a little business?

Jason: All right. So you’re, you’re ready to, to launch. Tell us about that, that launch.

Mike: I maybe launched a little different to a lot of other people in that I decided to do a Kickstarter campaign. I didn’t do the Kickstarter campaign cuz I needed the money. I mean the, the prime, the first run with packaging was I was under 10 grand and I already had that money. I only did the, the, the Kickstarter to test the waters and you get a mailing list from it as well.

And the thing with Kickstarter, probably a third of the money is your family and friends throwing you a pity bone. And you know, here you go, Mike, here’s 500 bucks. Oh, yay. You know, which is nice. You feel a bit guilty taking their money. But I, you know, you’re getting feedback from people all over the world saying, I love this.

I love this. I love this. I thought this is exciting. And the feedback, I met the amount that we asked for on Kickstarter within 24 hours. Now it wasn’t much, it was only 30 grand, but I thought this is great. You know, this was, this is fantastic. This it’s found a voice already., so for me that was less the financial win. It was the, it was the marketing nod. People said, yeah, we, we, we, we like this.

Jason: That’s awesome. So you asked for 30 grand or you ended up getting 30 grand?

Mike: I asked for 30 grand, you know, there’s a minimum threshold on these Kickstarter campaigns where some of the apps, if you don’t get the money, it all goes back. So I reached that threshold. So in the end, I, the Kickstarter campaign raised about 70,000, which for me was just free money and, and, and in hindsight, it’s exciting because the business has never been in debt. It’s never been in debt from, from that beginning day to when Brian and I sold it just a couple of months ago. I mean, it’s never had a dollar’s worth of debt, so it’s kind of fun to be able to say that.

Jason: That is really cool. And so you send the, the product out. You’re, you’re probably on pins and needles thinking are people actually gonna like it in order again. So did they, did they start ordering again?

Mike: The, the feedback when it was sent out was mostly positive. But when you’re selling a product that is really has zero additives, zero fillers. I mean, this is not for a lot of people. There is a popular, cough medicine. I don’t know if they have it in the states. They have it up here, it’s called Benadryl and their marketing campaign is, is that it tastes like beep, but it works. And I thought. This is my protein powder. I mean, if, if you can, I mean, it wasn’t, it didn’t taste like a swamp, but this was not lovely. And I found that to be very effective. I mean, I buy that specifically for my kids, cuz I think if there’s something torturous about it and they can’t make it taste better, then it’s gotta work. So I thought, all right, that’s my protein powder.

Jason: That’s amazing., did you get feedback, like people were performing better in athletics? Were they feel better? What, what kind of feedback were you getting other than…

Mike: I got a lot of positive feedback. I got a lot of people saying that largely, you know, in the supplement’s world, I think a, a lot of, you know, I’ve always, my mindset has always been to put the best product I can put forward. But if anybody who knows it sells online, you know, you get crack pots that tell you that it’s, you know, it’s made of which blood and you get all kind, you know, you get a lot wide range of people, but the majority of people simply said, I just love the fact that there’s no additives in it. I love the fact that it really is clean. I wanna put a banana and a lump of sugar in it, in my smoothie. That’s great. But they said you have legitimately delivered a clean product. Yeah. And I had a lot of people saying that the digestion is better and yeah.

Yeah. It makes you feel good. You know, at the end of the day I got into it essentially as a mechanism potentially for a lifestyle and also a product I believed in, but then you start and I came to learn this and I, I’m still surprised now I would get emails two, three years later from other products. And sometimes I’m reminded that, wow. You know, I, I, I, a lot of these products, people, you know, they wait for every 30 days and they, they do affect the quality of their life. And I’ve never, you know, I’ve seen myself as more of a business person than a, than a formulator cause I’ve relied on experts to do that work, you know, with years of training.

But it is nice when you receive compliments on a product that, that has legitimately changed a person’s life.

Jason: That’s awesome. So tell us about the business. When did you start to know, okay like this is gonna be my, my full-time gig for a while? Did you end up adding people to, to help you out? How did that all work?

Mike: Well, I never planned on building a business. I, I just thought I was launching a product and then three, six months later, people would say, we love it. Have you thought about doing a product X or a product Y? We buy this product from such and such and there’s this in it. Could you do a version? And I thought, wow.

You know, as I came to learn your customers probably already know the hardest thing is developing a customer base. And I realized I have a customer base, albeit very small, sell ’em something. Sell them something. So I started talking to the co packer I was working with and then other guys and girls across north America that did other products and, and I just started putting other ones into the marketplace and it was met the same way.

I mean, I, I’ve never prided myself on reinventing the wheel in the supplement space. It’s not something I wanted to do, but I just took what I knew were the most popular products and worked with formulators and said, well, what are the complaints that they get on this? And how can we make this better? So that was always my approach, you know, a five, 10, 20% improvement on a very popular existing product for me, I thought that’ll find an audience, especially if I can manage good customer service and keep the prices reasonable. That was, you know, that’s really the non-secret, secret sauce for me.

Jason: Nice. So let let’s talk about the e-commerce of it all. So what platform are you on? Or what platform were you on?, was it a Shopify, Magento?

Mike: I sold almost exclusively on Amazon with some on Shopify, the Shopify at the end of the day came in late in the three or four years of the business, and it was really just because I was using 3PL’s at that point to manage from manufacturer to Amazon. And I thought, well, why not have an outlet where I can sell some, you know, direct customer, but, yeah, the, I mean the main driver has always been Amazon.

Jason: So that has got to be a highly competitive space on Amazon. How did you get noticed? Like how, how were people finding you on Amazon? Because there’s gotta be a lot of supplements out there.

Mike: I Mean, it’s, I think the supplement space in Amazon’s probably the most congested, but I liked that. I always thought, you know, it goes back to my internal mindset where I never planned on being the biggest brand in north America. I’m too old to build that type of thing nor do I, I don’t have the motivation.

I’ve always thought I just need their crumbs. Somebody said to me in television many, many years ago where there’s, Coca-Cola, there’s always room for a Pepsi. Now I’m neither, you know, I’m the, I’m the Costco, Costco, Costco brand in, in the mom past or around the corner. But I only need, you know, a tiny slither of that business.

You know, I, I think I’m okay at marketing. I think I’m okay at telling a story around a product. For me, that was the, the things that drove me. I’m okay going into a populated space because I think I can tell a different story on a product than, than, than maybe some of the big boys can.

And I think often what happens is that these large companies move so slow. You know, every decision that they make on a label goes through hundreds of people takes months and months. I have the ability to correct and change and pivot very quickly. So I, I had no problem doing that.

Jason: Yeah, well, let’s bring, Brian from websiteclosers into the conversation here. Brian, when did you first become aware of, of Mike and his supplement company? 

Brian: Yeah, no good question. So, Mike was actually a referral from his brother. I had worked with his brother on a previous transaction and that was a warm introduction, but had the conversation probably about six months ago, a really good conversation, learned a bit about the business and, you know, it seemed like a really good fit for obviously what we’re doing here at websiteclosers was a lot to like, and so went from there.

Jason: So, and Mike was talking about his business is, you know, just getting the crumbs and he’s looking for a 0.01% of the supplement space. Like, why is that interesting to buyers?

Brian: Yeah, no good question. I think, look, it, it does present the idea that there’s more out there, right? I mean, he he’s taken a small share in a big marketplace and incremental gains there are gonna, you know, really add to the bottom line. Interesting thing about Mike’s too, is he just had incredible growth.

It was a relatively new business, you know, really only a couple years old, by the time he started to take it to market, but had seen really incredible growth. It’s well branded business. He was continuing to add new products, which are all things that I think the buying community was interested in. And like you said, it’s a big market, it’s a crowded market, but, but to Mike’s point, you know, even taking some crumbs off of that big market is impactful. 

I think there’s a lot of buyers out there that were interested. There’s a lot of buyers that are already in the space that wanted to add some of these product lines or bring in some of the branding expertise that Mike had. And so it was a good fit. We felt right away that there was going to be a solid market for it out there.

Uh, we just had to try to figure out what the best way to position it was, how to get the numbers ready to go and things like that. But, we knew from the start, there was a good business here. There was going to be a lot of interested parties and, and fortunately we were, we were right.

Jason: So from a, a buyer’s perspective then, is it something where they’re thinking, well, shoot, this guy has already penetrated the market a little bit, seems to have some, some great branding here. Look what he is done with just one person. You know, imagine what, what can be done with a, a bigger company, like a bigger team behind it. Is that, is that kind of the thinking?

Brian: That’s certainly part of it. No doubt. I think there, there is a story that Mike had about how he developed the business. There’s a story about the branding and, you know, the, the cleanness, like he mentioned behind it, which a lot of buyers were interested in because he already had that community that was bought into that type of product.

But you’re right. At the same time, he did it by himself with the help of a few VAs. And I, I do believe there’s buyers out there that realize there’s potential to build some scale around that, to, to add some team around that and to really take it to the next level. Absolutely. I think that was interesting to folks.

It’s hard I think in a situation where there is an element of creativity and, you know, kind of branding expertise, it’s sometimes hard to replicate that. And so I bet there are some concerns in the buying community about can they take, you know, kind of Mike’s branding expertise and replicate that. But couple that with just scale and manpower and woman power and, you know, I think there’s opportunity either way.

We had a great response. The market was excited. We had a number of really interested calls and a couple offers, and ultimately really ended up on a, on a good deal that, I, I think Mike’s happy with.

Jason: That’s really cool. Mike, when you’re thinking about, do I want to sell this company, were you factoring in like, well, I’ve got a pretty good thing going here. Am I sure that I want to, am I, do I want to get rid of this? Like what’s going through your head at that point as you’re, as you’re starting to think about, well, maybe I want to divest from this.

Mike: Yeah, for me, it was certainly not a fire sale. I mean, I was not, you know, overly, keen on selling. When I first reached out to Brian, it was, it was more of an explorative call just to get a sense of the process. And also, you know, being a small, you know, single kind of owner business. I, you know, I’ll say quite openly that my books were not up to Proctor and Gamble’s scratch, you know?

I mean, so, so there was a bit of learning there, you know, Brian laughs modesty, but he was very kind and, and not. 

Yeah. So, so I wanted, it was not, I wanted to get a sense of what does it look like to prepare the business for sale? And then that, that, and then that informed the question of, well, do I even wanna sale?

I mean, I, I, I didn’t really know what it was worth. I didn’t have a ballpark. So that was for me, I guess the first phase is Brian kind of holding my hand of, okay, this is what you’ve got. This is what we can make it look like. And this is what we think the, you know, the market may say to you. And that was all very exciting and much learning for me.

And as we went through the process, I think I became more and more keen to sell. My inner dialogue regarding selling was specifically, and it’s not lost on me that 99% of the business was Amazon. Everybody like me has a love and hate relationship with Amazon, you know, we all hear horror stories about Amazon can, you know, pull the plug on you generally, you know, Falsely, and then you bring your business back up.

So there’s a lot of that I’d been in business long enough to not to really worry about the nuances of Amazon, you know, making little errors and shutting me down, coming back up, that had never happened to me, but still there was part of me that also just thought, ah, you know, what would it look like if I just kind of cashed out of it?

I’m also 52, I’ve got two teenage daughters, so there’s a large lifestyle component for me. I mean, I, you know, it’s not lost on me that in a, in a way I kind of had the life that I already wanted in a way. I mean, I was the guy who was doing two hours on my laptop. And, but still you’re, even though you’re doing two hours on your laptop, people rarely say that you are always thinking about it.

It’s always on your mind, you do a lot of work. That’s not in front of your laptop and you do a lot of worrying too. So I thought, you know, now is the time for that. And also for me, I knew that the business was at a point where if it was either gonna stay where it was, or I needed to put teams in place to scale it up.

And I don’t like working with other people very much, you know, I don’t wanna manage people. I can manage products and I manage a couple of VAs, but as Brian will kindly attest, you know, I, I can be a bit of maintenance myself, so I don’t wanna force that on to other people. So I, I knew that, you know, at this point I gotta pass the baton up, and then, you know what I, and my VAs are doing, they’re gonna separate into teams.

You know, I’m doing supply chain, I’m doing graphics, I’m doing purchasing. So it needed to build up. And I didn’t want that.

Jason: Gotcha. Brian, when buyers are looking at this company, or any supplement company in, in general, like what kind of multiples are they, are they looking at? What kind of range would that be? And that’s for anybody listening to this. Who’s thinking, oh, you know what? I’ve got an Amazon company or I’ve got a supplement company., maybe I wanna sell one day. What kind of multiples are we looking at?

Brian: Yeah. Look really good question. I think at websiteclosers, we probably sold more supplement companies than, than, than anyone out there. And so we probably have a good feel for the supplement market. It’s still a really strong market. I think there is a lot of demand, like we’ve said earlier, there’s a lot of competition.

So I think there’s probably a bit of pressure coming in that market just because of that element. But I think in Mike’s deal, we were able to get, you know, over five times, hi, his trailing 12 earnings and have to do the math. I think it might actually be even higher. Maybe close to six. When you look at where his trailing, certainly where you look at where his trailing 12 earnings are when we started the, started the process.

He can kind of continue to grow into those numbers as he went through. You know, we, we do still see multiples on the supplement business above five, you know, again, in his case, it was probably closer to six when he added all up and that’s not necessarily normal. I mean, there’s always that caveat of every deal is different.

Every situation is different. The dynamics that drove his deal up that high are not always going to be present. Like, it’s not a, a one size fit, all fits all market multiple approach. So we gotta really consider all the factors, whether it’s, you know, the type of products, the branding on the products, how the team is set up, all those things weigh in, but supplements have generally been a good business.

They tend to carry higher multiples. A lot of the reasons why our, the repeat nature of, of the, the buyers, that is a, you know, really critical factor to a lot of the buyers out there. They like to see repeat customer rates, and supplements tend to carry that you have a good product, people come back.

 So that gives buyers a lot of comfort and generally allows them to pay a little bit higher, multiple. So, yeah, really strong multiple for Mike. Again, it’s, a pretty good market there., but every case is different. And you gotta just kind of weigh out each of the individual factors before really knowing where we think we.

Jason: Nice. So you, you say, five or five to six times trailing 12 earnings. Does that mean revenue from the previous 12 months? Or does that mean net from the previous 12 months?

Brian: Yeah, net earnings. So we, we calculate what we call sellers, discretionary earnings, or SDE. Effectively, it’s the earnings in the business after any discretionary take from the seller. So you often you see sellers with, you know, they’ll put their, their car and, you know, cell phone and some other things through the business.

So we back those things out to a, a view of the business with the earnings that will be left for a new owner, right? So the, the profit of the business, the operations of the business before the owner takes anything out, and that’s what we call SDE. And that SDE is what we use to then apply the multiple.

Jason: Okay. And, and so, Mike, how did you, it sounds like you had a, a couple options at least from, from buyers. How did you decide, like, what was the right fit? 

Mike: I mean, Brian has many strengths, but, but one of them are that he was very good at explaining each deal in a way that kind of, you know, made sense to me. I’d never gone down this track before I’d had some experience in real estate. So I would often try to find, you know, an analogy. Can you explain this to me in a real estate way? And sometimes you could, sometimes you couldn’t, but a lot of the deals, had a, a kind of a, a, you know, an ownership hold at the end.

That was a hard, no, for me. So I think that took a couple off the table immediately. I did not want to stick with the business. So that took a couple off the table and it was, I think it largely came down to kind of a cash deal versus the payout structure at the end. I obviously wanted, you know, to, to quicken that payout structure as much as I can.

And of course the seller does not want to do that. They want to keep some security in the form of cash and whatnot on their side. So we ended up dealing with one buyer throughout the whole thing. And they were the, they were the ones that we went with in the end. You know, and frankly, a lot of it, this is a very emotional, intense process. You’re on a lot of calls. Brian is on all of these calls. I would jokingly say to Brian, you know, I, for me, Brian walks on water, by the way. I mean, I got the world’s best business broker. I got the world’s best accountant, but I also got the world’s best psychologist. So, you know, he was, there was often nights where he was talking me off cliffs and, you know, cuz it’s a lot of money for a little guy like me.

And, there was, you know, there was the, the, the, the, the deal is not just what’s on paper, but it’s also how it’s gonna affect your lifestyle. I mean, do I want to be worrying about the new owner, how they’re running the business for two years when I no longer have any control, you know, and they’re holding back a considerable amount of money, that’s something where I’ve gotta like the buyer I’ve gotta trust them.

And I’ve gotta rely on Brian’s insight and experience with buyers like them or them specifically. So there was a lot of nuances there that helped me make a decision towards the end.

Jason: Did you end up getting a, a lot of cash up front and then there’s a, a payout later?

Mike: Yeah. I mean, I, yeah, Brian’s reminded me a couple of times that in the scheme of things, you know, this, he, he likes to tell me this was a bit of a rare deal. And I, and I also know from other sellers and peers that I’ve been told that I did, you know, Brian has since told me afterwards that you pushed a hard bargain.

I, and I’ve come to learn that I did. There was a few occasions where, I wouldn’t say I was ready to walk, but I was a little cut and dry in my response. And I, I may be fortunate, more fortunate than other guys in that. Like I said earlier, you know, it was never a fire sale for me. I was kind of okay to potentially hang onto it for another year or two.

So I think that put me in a, in a, in a nice negotiation position, but I, I, you know, I, I, I had a sense that, that there was worth something and I, I, I probably squeezed the sellers a little harder than other the, the buyers, than other sellers might. Brian, any thoughts?

Brian: No. Look, I think that’s fair. I think it’s a fair description. I think he did have the benefit of not needing to sell that is important, right? It’s buyers certainly can tell when you’re trying to get out and you’re desperate and, and knowing that he didn’t need to get out and he had some time and he was comfortable holding on, does give him some leverage, certainly that other sellers don’t have.

So that did help and he’s right. Look, I, I was surprised he, he pushed a few times harder than I might have, but it ended up working out in his favor and he stayed the course. And, look, I think he got a great deal., I think it was a really strong deal in the market we’re in today and a good outcome, certainly a lot of cash up front, a little bit of a deferred payout, but overall really nice structure for him.

Mike: I would say in addition, there was I, there was quite a few moments throughout the deal where I didn’t like the look of something, but Brian would take the time to explain to me why they’ve structured it like this. And it made sense. And my original gut reaction to what they wanted seemed uncanny or unreasonable.

But when, as was explained to me, I thought, okay, now I understand it. And it became a lot more palatable for me. So that for me was extremely helpful. It was, the nuances in a very big contract where I could have got lost if left to my own devices. And like I say, you know, it is an emotional decision because for me, a one-man band.

It’s not lost on me that I feel like they’re buying my baby. I mean, they’re buying everything. They’re buying all that branding and all of that investment. They’re buying the story, they’re buying everything. So I think it’s probably like real estate agent where, you know, people have a tendency to value their own home more than others do. Cuz you have an, you have an emotional investment in it. So Brian was very good at allowing me to extract some areas where there could have been considerable value and he would lean me towards, you know, Mike, you, you, you know, no, no, they see it through this lens. So that’s why it’s only worth that.

Jason: That’s awesome. Congratulations, both of you. Two more things, Mike, and, and I’ll, I’ll let you go here. One is what’s next? Like what’s your next plan? Is it more eCommerce? Is it more supplements?

Mike: Well, I I’ve been, I’ve been retired for 72 hours and I don’t like it. It doesn’t suit me very well, so, but yeah, I got out of it largely for a lifestyle decision, but, you know, I, I, I think I’ll go back into it. I was made to sign a two-year com non-compete, which I was told is good. Typically it would be more so, you know, I mean, love Brian, and I’d love to work with him again.

So I, I, we’ve had a couple of chats about what it would look like, and, and there’s been so much experience now just through the process of dealing with Brian, selling it, that I would now take into how I build a new business. For me, that was not expected. I thought a sale would be a sale, but the selling process is so valuable to me cuz now I, I could build a little business through the eyes of a buyer.

I was never building this through the eyes of a buyer. So there’s immense value for that. So, yeah, Brian, hasn’t, hasn’t seen the last of me yet maybe to his chagrin.

Jason: Well, it doesn’t sound like it. well, Mike, last question, you got a little bit of cash or you’re about to get a little bit of cash in, in your bank. What’s your, what’s your first purchase? Like how do you treat yourself?

Mike: I’m too. I’m too old to go out and be the guy who’s buying the Ferrari or the stupid watch. I, I, I got into this business because for me, money buys your freedom and it buys your choice. I mean, I’m still gonna wear $5 t-shirts I mean, I, I, I, for me, it’s about, you know, maybe a little bit of real estate just to pay it off.

And frankly just put the money into things that will make me other money and buy me more freedom. It’s security. You know, that’s why I got into this for security. I got into it for financial security. I have that to a large extent now, that’s where the money’s gonna go. There’ll be a few overpriced bottles of wine, some fancy dinners for friends, but I’ll get that outta my system pretty quickly.

Jason: That’s great. What about like going to Spain or going to, you know, somewhere and travel?

Mike: Well, the non-sexy answer as I was kind of doing that already. I mean, the business was affording me that, I mean, I, you know, my biggest problem is I have nobody to do this stuff with. Every, I’m telling everybody get into eCommerce getting, because you know, my friends have got jobs. They go to offices, you know, and I don’t wanna be the guy saying I’ll pay for your ticket, but I, I might pay for your ticket, come to Mexico over a week. We can do, you know, sit on the beach together on our laptops. But so my biggest problem is, you know, finding somebody else like me. Good problem to have.

Jason: Definitely. Well, congratulations everybody. Mike, especially that that’s awesome. And, yeah, I’m excited to see what’s next for you and, and what, your next e-commerce venture will be.

Mike: Yeah, thank you. And I, you know, I wanna say to, to your listeners who were me, you know, six months ago that I, I mean, this is not prompted by anybody who’s listening, but I mean, Brian, honestly, I can’t tell you. The, the, the psychology part of what he offered, but just, I never, ever once felt a moment of pressure.

I mean, and there was many times when I, I, I let him believe that I was ready to walk away. There may have been various truths in that behind the scenes, but as far as Brian was concerned, he never ever once said anything that alluded to the idea of Mike, I think you should take this. In fact, whenever I express concerns, his immediate response was always Mike, if this isn’t the deal, we’ll find another one. 

And it’s not lost on me that on a, you know, Brian stood to make a, a nice commission on this. And I thought I have a family full of real estate agents. And I, that was the most elegant thing he could ever have done. I never once felt pressured to move in any direction that I wasn’t felt comfortable. When I didn’t feel comfortable, he educated me and that’s what I wanted. I just wanted education to make my own decision. I, I, I can’t tell you how fantastic the experience was with him.

Jason: Alright, that was Mike in the supplement space. Such a great story of getting just a tiny fraction of a huge market and making the most of it. Thanks everyone for listening to this episode of the Deal Closers Podcast, brought to you by If you like this show, be sure to rate us, write a review, press the follow button, or share with your network. And of course, if you’re looking for help selling your ecommerce business, be sure to visit This episode was edited and produced by Earfluence. I’m Jason Gillikin, and we’ll see you next on the Deal Closers Podcast!