The 2016 Executive Excellence Awards: Josh Neblett
Cofounder & CEO, Etailz Inc.
January 28, 2016
What has rapidly become a thriving, supplier-focused online retailer was built on the foundation of another dream. Josh Neblett confesses that his initial venture, GreenCupboards.com, was a glorified science project in its effort to develop and sell environmentally friendly household products online. After raising $288,000 in investment, it booked only $5,000 in sales its first year.
Neblett learned, however, that he could help solve the kinds of problems his suppliers were experiencing. Suppliers arent treated as a customer by a retailer, he explains. Theyre often squeezed. After changing GreenCupboards name to Etailz in 2013, the 29-year-old graduate of Gonzaga University and his cofounder and former professor, Tom Simpson, now help more than 2,300 suppliers with their sales on Amazon, eBay and through their own curated websites.
Instead of chemists, Neblett hires software developers to create cloud-based tools to help optimize brand performance. From its headquarters in Spokane, Etailz seeks to become the industry expert on sales through online marketplaces. The company, which employs 119 full-time workers, has seen annual sales grow from $435,000 in 2009 to an anticipated $100 million in 2015.
Not even the internet can contain Nebletts retailing energy: Etailz has opened three brick-and-mortar stores in downtown Spokane to complement online sales. GreenCupboards continues to operate as a brand under the Etailz umbrella ecomom.com is another providing an ongoing reminder of its ambitious beginning.
That bootstrap mentality, Neblett notes, allowed us to continue and innovate.