How Two Friends Built a $100 Million Company

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Step Two: Persistence Pays – Even in a Recession

Lowry and Ryan produced their first product just as the Internet bubble gave way to a recession that hit the San Francisco Bay area hard. The company quickly bled through the $100,000 in savings the partners had put up as seed capital. The founders mixed the first few batches of their all-purpose cleaning solution in a bathtub and delivered orders in a beat-up truck. By the Spring of 2001, Method had hired Dorward as CEO, but the founders would soon max out their credit cards. At one point, they had just $16 left in the bank and payments to vendors were three or four months past due. "We had to appeal to the inner entrepreneur of each of our vendors," Lowry told Inc. last year "We had to sell them on the fact that Eric and I could do something that had never been done before."