Ep10 – Stories from a Founder: Product Development Challenges and Finding Success


For Episode 10 of the Business Decisions podcast, we’re joined by Eric Delapenha, the Founder of Strands Hair Care. ( Strands makes shampoo and conditioner that is customized for each person, based on an analysis of each customer’s hair biochemistry. Customers send in a small hair sample and some additional information, and Strands sends back a complete hair profile along with the ideal products to help each customer achieve their hair goals. It’s a fascinating business, both for the science as well as the logistics of sending out customized products at scale. Originally from Jamaica, Eric has a degree in Biology from University of Southern California and worked at Fulgent Genetics before starting Strands. He shares with us how the business got started, how they work to ensure customers are comfortable sending them a hair sample, and how they identify the right ingredients to achieve different hair goals and offer so many different variations of their products.
After the conversation with Eric, (23:30) we’re joined by Ian Bies, an IP/IT lawyer from Caravel Law. Ian also has a degree in Microbiology & Immunology from McGill University, and has worked as General Counsel for a biotech company. Ian shares his thoughts on the kinds of agreements that need to established if you are going to ask consumers to send in personal materials, and how any policies need to be communicated to ensure that there is a clear understanding of how the sample will be used and that you have informed consent from your customer.
It’s important to note that Ian Bies is sharing his thoughts on general topics and questions and not anyone’s specific business or legal situation. Nothing you hear on this podcast should be considered legal advice.
Strands Hair Care –
Host: Stuart Wood, Caravel Law
Theme Music: The Box Jellys
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