Tina Paine always wanted to open her own business, but life got in the way. Supporting a daughter in college and assisting in caring for an elderly mother who was living with the family required much of her time and resources. By Nancy E. Williams
Tina Paine always wanted to open her own business, but life got in the way. Supporting a daughter in college and assisting in caring for an elderly mother who was living with the family required much of her time and resources.
In researching various business options, Paine found some that seemed ideal but required investments beyond her comfort level. She wanted something reasonably priced so she wouldn’t be financially devastated in case things didn’t work out. Her other requirements were that the business involve something healthy and that its operations could be mastered easily.
Naturals2Go was the perfect choice: a business program offering healthy snacks and drinks, utilizing the latest technology in automated retail with services and support unmatched in the vending industry. Not only did it fulfill all her requirements, but because it is a business opportunity as opposed to a franchise, there are no royalties and owners create their own business entities, leveraging Naturals2Go products and resources.
In 2013, after 25 years working in the legal and business sectors, Paine started her own business, Wicked Healthy Vending. It provides nutritious snacks and beverages to various communities in Massachusetts.
“I started with five machines because I was working full time,” Paine says. “The first five were placed very quickly. I added three more shortly after, and organically, we grew, on average, eight machines per year.”
Through a wide array of activities including cold calling, nurturing existing accounts and attending health fairs, Paine grew her business. Once she reached 15 machines, she could no longer operate the business solo.
“I hired my nephew to work 15 hours per week. When we hit 22 machines, I purchased a van. My nephew decided to move on, so I hired an employee to replace him. After reaching 35 machines, I hired another employee,” Paine says.
Wicked Healthy Vending services a variety of locations such as gyms, YMCAs, hotels, dealerships, corporations and nonprofit organizations. With such impressive growth, the company now operates out of warehouse space to support a 50-machine inventory.
Paine has no regrets about leaving her job to pursue her entrepreneurial dreams. Not only has she done well from a revenue perspective, but she’s been able to give back to her community.
“I regularly participate in programs to feed the hungry on the North Shore of Massachusetts, doing monthly donations of snacks, support transitional housing programs for former inmates, participate in Project Pink for breast cancer awareness and just recently, in the wake of Covid19, deliver snacks to essential workers.”
Breaking away from a corporate job to pursue business ownership can be risky, but ultimately quite rewarding. Having done it successfully, Paine has advice for anyone considering such a career move.
“As you grow your business, your challenges are different. Reach out to peers in your community, and always continue to learn. Going from a corporate environment where you interact with lots of coworkers daily to working by yourself can feel isolating,” Paine says.
She also strongly recommends having a business plan and keeping personal accounts separate from business accounts.
With her success so far, Paine and Wicked Healthy Vending are well on the way to reaching her goal of 100 machines in the next three years.
If you would like to learn more about the Naturals2Go vending business opportunity, visit naturals2go.com.
– Nancy E. Williams