It’s tough to make it in the food industry these days. Trends change so quickly and as they do, they’re liable to take a lot of food-inspired startups with them. Six small businesses in the food industry recently got some help in keeping their mission going. They were named among the 20 recipients of this year’s Chase Mission Main Street Grants program. Each winner gets $100,000 furnished by Chase and a trip to LinkedIn headquarters later this year for what’s being billed as a Small Business Boot Camp aimed at helping these recipients leverage the power of the social site and its digital marketing.
One of those companies is a startup formed by Ohio State University graduates who happen to be identical twins. Strangely (for some) their business is based in beef jerky and video games. They call it Jerky XP and its mission is to deliver beef jerky to hungry gamers who simply can’t put down their controllers for more than a minute to snack.
So, what got Jerky XP one of the 20 grants awarded this year? It’s passion … passion for their business, their product, and their mission.
“We’re looking for someone who’s so wildly passionate about their business. They will ask people to carry the water with them. We’re looking for that kind of mentality,” says Allison Bennett, Chase for Business Chief Marketing Officer, in an interview with Small Business Trends.
How passionate are the OSU twins? They’ve even onboarded help of the four-legged variety and named their dog as CEO. Bennett was on hand to deliver an over-sized novelty check to the founders of Jerky XP recently and said the twins’ dog even participated in the ceremony, accepting the check. (If it were really up to the dog, though, Jerky XP might be forced to take the winnings in jerky only!)