Mission Three, a student business that delivers fresh fruit directly to students’ doors, is planning to expand its services beyond Georgetown after receiving strong student feedback since its launch in February.
In the seven months between the inception of Mission Three, founded by Arthur Woods (MSB ’10) and nine other then-freshmen, the company has sold 900 bags of fruit. Woods said that the group, which has between 130-150 regular customers, is negotiating an expansion to the George Washington University and is talking to interested students at Loyola University Chicago about a possible expansion to those campuses.
Fruit for the group, which was formed because the 10 founders were frustrated with the quality of produce in O’Donovan Dining Hall, is supplied by Toigo Orchards in Pennsylvania, and organizes the delivery of tote bags filled with fresh fruit to students. All products are said to be picked within a week of delivery.
Horace Lam (MSB ’10), Mission Three’s chief financial officer, said that the summer served as a time for the group to do some “brainstorming and reflection” and to “improve a lot of things internally and externally.”
Among those things is a revamped Web site, with the ability for customers to form and manage a personal account online. Woods hopes that such measures can create “a sense of ownership” for the consumer. Additionally, new options for the student customer are available, including the option to pick up one’s bag at Healy Gates or the Southwest Quadrangle rather than having it delivered.
Mission Three is also attempting to launch a corporate delivery service to offer its products to local businesses, according to the company’s Web site.
The business is expanding quickly enough that the board members have had to split duties. Lam and Woods currently officially oversee all of Mission Three’s operations, while the Georgetown service has been taken over by Jeffrey Bien (COL ’10), the group’s executive vice president of customer relations and Dominique Mungin (COL ’10), the company’s executive vice president of sales.
Over the summer, Mission Three won the 2007 Spirit of Entrepreneurship Award in the Talent and Innovation Competition Americas, which was held in Panama. This earned them the right to continue on to the Global TIC competition in Taiwan during the summer, where they competed unsuccessfully for the global Spirit of Entrepreneurship Award. Mission Three was one of two American companies out of the 800 competing in various categories.
Claudia Gabriel (COL ’07) said that she was impressed with ission Three.
“I’d have to say my experience was extremely positive,” she said. “These apples tasted like they had just been picked. . The direct-door delivery was nice [and] for 10 bucks, it was an amazing deal.”
Lam said the company plans to reinvest all of its profits back into the business.
“The minute we feel we aren’t contributing to the community, we’ll need to re-evaluate our purpose,” he said.