Baby on Board: New Brand and New Baby

The toughest thing I’ve ever done has to be launching a new business and having a baby in the same year. I didn’t plan it that way but that’s how it happened. And I’m sure you’re dying to ask, “Would I do it all over again?” But before I answer this question, let me add a little context.

I started working on my business concept in March of 2010. Around November of that year, the business plan was coming together. I had also scheduled a vacation to Nicaragua with my wife, brother and his girlfriend around this same time.

The night before we were scheduled to leave for Nicaragua my wife surprised me that she was pregnant. And just like the Starship Enterprise jumping to warp speed, I saw my life flash before my eyes. These flashes included the visions excitement of my new startup, the joy of being a parent in addition to the fact that I still had to go and raise funds for my new venture.

Needless to say, internally I was a little stressed. But I did my best to keep my cool and spent time on my vacation thinking about all the things I had to do in the time between having a new member join our family and getting the business launched and up and running.

Surfing and stress in Nicaragua. Photo by Dipan Desai

As soon as I got back from my vacation I went into overtime on fundraising and I ended up raising $285k in 30 days. This allowed me to launch the brand in late March of 2011. Once the brand was launched I could focus on building the brand while learning from the interactions with retailers and customers.

HDX Hydration Mix, the first baby born in March 2011.

A few months after the launch of the brand, my wife and I welcomed a beautiful little boy who’s been the driving inspiration to my business and our little family. I would say that 2011 was probably the most challenging, trying and amazing time I’ve experienced in my life so far. The excitement of the brand being welcomed by retailers and consumers to becoming what I’ve always wanted to be, a Dad.

My son is now 3 1/2 years old and sometimes accompanies me when I visit retailers or when we sample at events. He’s been a vital part of my drive in building HDX and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

My little co-pilot helping me make deliveries.

Launching a business and having a baby is no easy task but as an entrepreneur you don’t always have a say in what happens in life. What you do control is how you choose to rise up to the challenges. So would I change anything if I could go back and do it all over again?

No way, it’s been an amazing journey so far and I could not envision one without the other.

Having been an entrepreneur most of my life I’ve built up a tolerance for stress. It’s very stressful launching a business but you have to keep cool head. This is where I believe sometimes entrepreneurs start to stumble. The high level of stress when launching a new business forces us to think fast and sometimes we have to make big decisions while under duress. But it’s important to make these decisions while keeping in mind both the short and long-term affects of these decisions.

If you’re launching a business in 2015, congratulations and welcome to the club. I wish you nothing but success and don’t let the stress get in the way of your endeavors or your family!

Vipe Desai