What comes after wedding photos and tacos? Apparently dog treats.
Justin Miller, the Raleigh entrepreneur behind WedPics and the taco cart, El Taco Cartel, has a new venture – Zookies Cookies.
Miller has teamed with Tom Simon, co-founder of Source3, to sell mixes for dogs cookies.
This week Miller sold one of his companies, the photo sharing app WedPics, to a Palo Alto company for an undisclosed amount. This summer, Facebook acquired Source3, also for an undisclosed amount.
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Miller and Simon’s new venture had an altruistic start.
In the wake of Hurricane Harvey, Miller baked dog cookies to sell, posting the cookies on his social media accounts and committing to give all the profits to help hurricane victims.
“In 24 hours I was able to donate $1,600,” he said in an interview Wednesday.
The popularity of the cookies made him realize there was a market for healthy treats people could make “for their four-legged friends,” and his next company was born. The venture is self-funded, and Miller said the “only employees are the four-legged kind who readily and gladly assist in taste testing and quality feedback.”
Miller and Simon officially launched Zookies Cookies this past weekend with four mixes: Cocomutt, Pupkin Pie, the Peanut Barker and – for the holidays – Begnog. The Pupkin Pie mix contains pumpkin, sweet potato flour, peanut butter, apples and oats.
Each jar will make 48 cookies. A jar costs $19.99, except for Cocomutt, which is grain free and vegan and costs $21.99. A dog bone cookie cutter is included.
Miller stresses: “You don’t need any baking experience. You just need 1 cup of water and an oven to bake them in.”
About that name: “Zookie” is a combination of “zoo” and “cookie.” Miller says that since he has a dog, two chickens and a pig, people often tell him that he lives in a zoo.
In addition to its website, Zookies Cookies are available in Raleigh at William&Company on Person Street and at The Urban Chicken on Westgate Drive.
For more information, go to www.zookiescookies.com/