Drill Spot's owners start Limeade Tech
Last Updated: 15:14 August 21, 2013
Drill Spot, sells tools online as a go-between for suppliers and customers. Limeade designed its first product, a high-capacity charger for mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. It is manufactured in China.
The two companies, which share space and some employees, moved into 4,057 square feet of office space at 3180 Sterling Circle, Suite 200.
Chief operations officer Melissa Lau said DrillSpot's lease at 5603 Arapahoe Road was up, and the company was looking for a smaller space. The former location was more than 9,000 square feet and broken into chunks.
"We really wanted to bring everyone together into one space where we could collaborate together," said Lau, who said DrillSpot and Limeade combined have about 17 employees.
There's been no downsizing or upsizing in regard to employee count with either the move or the addition of Limeade. Duties have merely shifted, Lau said.
Chief executive Paul Lin formed DrillSpot in 2005, and the company took off quickly, making Inc. magazine's list of the top 500 growing companies in 2010.
The company experimented with having a warehouse in Denver where it could store inventory from suppliers who didn't want a drop-shipping arrangement. But DrillSpot recently changed its business model, going almost solely to drop shipping - where it buys direct from suppliers as product is purchased and suppliers ship directly to the customer. The company's warehouse is empty and on the market.
The change reduced the overhead for DrillSpot making it easier to compete with online giants like Amazon.com. Without divulging amounts, Lau said revenue and profits continue to grow for the company as it streamlines operations and improves its search engine optimization, albeit at a slower rate than the early years when DrillSpot grew 918 percent to $10.1 million in revenue in 2010.
The idea for Limeade came during a trip to New York last year in which Lin and Lau were caught in Hurricane Sandy and driving a rental car to Canton, Ohio because that was the nearest place they could book a flight back to Colorado. During the drive, their cellphones went dead as they were trying to update family members on their whereabouts, and the idea for a high-capacity mobile charger, the Limeade Blast, was born.
A private investor helped get the Limeade Blast idea off the ground, and a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign in May pulled in more than $284,000.
"Paul was itching to start a new business venture anyway so this is what we started," Lau said.
The Limeade Blast is a mobile charging station for devices like smartphones and tablets. There are five versions that range in price from $25 to $99, with the largest providing an 18,000 milliamp hour capacity and all including fast 2 amp input and output charge rates. The unit can charge an iPhone 11 times on one charge, and the Blast holds its charge for up to a year.
Lau said the Blast is the first of several mobile-geared tech products on tap for the Limeade brand.
"We want to push the limits of what is possible," Lau said.
Wade Arnold, Audrey Berne and Steve Johnson of the Colorado Group brokered the lease.
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