Macro Mike growth pushed by passion and peanuts
Written on the 14 August 2019 by Michie Leppard
He snatched up the Startup title at last year's Gold Coast Young Entrepreneurs Awards, and now Macro Mike founder Michael Kellett is taking Australia by storm.
Kellett is taking on multinational health food conglomerates with his range of 100 per cent natural protein products and gym supplements, with some big deals in the pipeline.
The former bodybuilder tells Business News Australia the plan is to "saturate" the Australian market in the year ahead - a strategy that will be aided by two significant contracts in the past month.
"One of them is with Unique Health, which are the biggest health food distributors in Australia, they've got 8000 stores that they work with. They want to put Macro Mike across as one of their key brands," says Kellett.
"By the end of 2020, we'll be in pretty much every health food store and independent grocery channel in Australia. And then we also just landed a contract with Woolworths as well. So hopefully, we're going to be in the supermarket chain."
From what began as a one-man operation in a two-bedroom apartment, Macro Mike has now expanded its production to a 350sqm facility with an additional warehouse.
Kellett says the innovative range of protein powders, health-inspired baking products and gym supplements produced by Macro Mike have pushed the success of the business to where it is today.
"If you take vegan or plant-based protein powder, for example, there are probably 100 brands out there which are all made from the exact same ingredients," he says.
"We like to say that we completely reinvented what vegan protein was, and instead of doing another pea and rice protein we actually looked at different ingredients. Ours is based off peanut protein.
"The taste difference, it's like like chalk and cheese. It's absolutely astronomical."
Both Kellett and his motivated are pleasantly surprised by the reception their products have received, with one of Macro Mike's latest products finding "unprecedented" demand.
"We just released a protein bar a couple of weeks ago, which is gone," he says.
"A thousand boxes at 12,000 bars made and by the time they got to the warehouse, we'd already sold them on. So, that's been pretty hectic."
The fitness and health fanatic says the group's success has also been linked to its use of reviews and customer service satisfaction to validate the products' high standards.
Kellett will often send personalised emails to customers urging them to leave reviews, and the result has been an overwhelming amount of positive feedback.
"It's like 'Hey, guys, you know, my name is Mike. I just wanted to personally thank you. We would love it if you could take two minutes to leave us a review and then as a thank you we'll give you like a little voucher to spend on the website'," he says.
"We probably organically get 100 five star reviews a week or something just from using that system. So, I think the product validation is definitely key to success as well...They just know it's a genuine product that works."
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Business News Australia
Author: Michie Leppard