Entrepreneur Max Dresse Launches a Sustainable Health Brand
You’ve watched Tiger King, you’ve had Zoom sessions with your college friends, and you’ve practiced along with your favorite yoga instructions on Instagram Live. After making vegan banana bread and downing one too many snacks…you’re feeling not-so-hot. Well, Max Dresse and the company he founded, Bellway, are here to help you “move it all through” with healthy and sustainable dietary fiber.
Dresse was an intern at the vegan protein company ALOHA when it exploded into New York City’s VC Scene in 2013. Max was hired to optimize the website (which he did). Then seeing untapped revenue potential in places like affiliate programs, medical offices, and offline sales he got creative selling into Starbucks, Equinox, and Target. Dresse says, “We wrote a new playbook. It was new at the time that e-commerce businesses launched in stores. Now it’s more and more common. And now everybody is talking about omni-channel. But at that time, we were one of the very first companies to come from an e-commerce subscription business and bring it into traditional brick-and-mortar retail.”
The maverick became known as an omni-channel sales and marketing expert. He was tapped by companies who wanted to change with the times. Dresse innovated brands like Hello Fresh and Freshly for retail placement using his Rubik’s Cube-like mind to figure out some of the business’s biggest problems. Problems like the fact that different ingredients in meal kits have different shelf lives, how to adapt to millennial buying trends, and of course, how to pay attention to sustainability.
Fruits, Veggies & Enough Fiber
While working with some of the largest retailers in the US, such as GNC, Albertsons, Stop & Shop, Walgreens and more, Dresse noticed that the dietary fiber food category was seriously underserved. The leading brand in the space had been on the market since the 1930s and has an ingredient list that contained chemicals no one of his generation would go near. The health food store staple of plain psyllium husk could be hard to get down. And tasted like, well…nothing. Dresse figured, “There has to be a better way to get [dietary] fiber.” When doing his research, Dresse learned that 95% of Americans don’t eat enough dietary fiber and don’t even want to eat the fruits and veggies required to meet those minimum daily requirements.
Five Four Ventures is an incubation and VC firm known for investing in market leaders including Headspace and the Sanctuary App, took notice of Dresse. They partnered to create the most user-friendly, healthy, and even tasty dietary fiber out there. Bellway Is “Next Generation Fiber.” It’s made with a base of organic psyllium husk combined with dried fruit juice. Bellway’s blends are non-GMO, vegan, gluten-free, and aspartame-free. There are no added chemicals or preservatives. And everything is ethically sourced. This product is not only effective, it reflects the ethos and values of our time.
Bellway Finds a Healthfood Niche
As fate would have it, Bellway launched as Covid-19 swept the nation (and the world). Its Rockefeller Center headquarters closed indefinitely. The initial rollout plan (like everything in our lives) was totally sidelined. Dresse, who lives in New York City, has not left the small apartment he shares with his partner in weeks. Yet…something revolutionary happened. Website sales have spiked. It seems that not only are people stuck AT home, but they’re stuck IN their homes. Meaning, many people have overdone the quarantine snacks while often underdoing real movement or vigorous exercise. So people stuck at home are looking to keep their digestive systems moving with dietary fiber.
“It’s just confirming what we already knew” expressed Dresse. “People need a good dietary fiber product they can turn to, for regular maintenance, and for acute issues as well.” Ever the humble hard worker, Dresse states, “We never could have predicted that our launch date would be during a global pandemic. We also never could have known that our product would be something that could help people’s health while they were stuck inside. At Bellway, we just created something that we ourselves wanted and needed. And we’re seeing how many other people feel the same.”
Fiber Up Your Diet
Learn more about Bellway at Getbellway.com.