Back in August 2009, Candy.com crowned 8-year-old Miles Louison “Candy Kid” for his work launching a “candy sushi” company. As part of the Candy Kid award, Miles won $500 worth of candy from Candy.com to help catapult his business.
Fast forward to Dec. 2011, and the young rising star is still at the helm of his candy sushi business, which is now officially titled, Sushimee. He also just came in first place at the entrepreneurial contest Startup Weekend Denver. Miles is youngest person in the history of this contest to enter it, and, hands down, the youngest to win it.
The afternoon that I caught up with Miles and his mom Lynnea Louison, Miles was fresh from school … and his second live television interview with 9News in Denver to talk about his win and where his Sushimee empire is headed.
“I had pools of sweat in my hands during the interview,” Miles told me when I asked him about his 9News appearance.
Watching the segment, you’d never know it. Miles is not camera-shy, which came in handy for pitching his candy sushi product in front of judges at the Startup Weekend Denver competition.
Miles’ candy sushi product line is made with Rice Krispie treats (the “rice”), fruit leathers, and vibrant candies like Swedish Fish, Twizzlers, and gummy worms. The candies come packaged in a sushi-esque box containing six pieces, dipping sauce (melted chocolate), wasabi (green icing), and pickled ginger (dried mango slices).
At Miles’ new Web site, Sushimee.com, each piece of candy sushi has a story. Lynnea says that as soon as the site went live, 71 orders came flooding in. “We had to shut down the e-commerce component,” she explains. “We are hoping to have it live again by early December.”
So what’s next for the now 10-year-old Candy Kid? Miles and his mom are working with a local commissary kitchen to grow the business and, according to Miles, Sushimee already has a handful of commercial accounts lined up.
Miles is also working closely with his mentor Linda Enstrom of Denver-based Enstrom Candy.
At the rate Miles is going, I think he’ll have a business book deal or spot on “The Apprentice” by 7th grade. Way to go Candy Kid!
Do you know a child who is doing great things in the confectionery or culinary world? Let us know! We’re on the lookout for special kids who deserve to be recognized as a Candy Kid. To nominate someone, send a short video (three minutes or less), or send an e-mail telling us about the great things your Candy Kid is up to. Send all nominations to firstname.lastname@example.org.