Interview with Kishan Madamala, Founder & CEO, Maxton and Company
Tell us about your company.
Maxton and Company launched in 2011 as an online retail and services company. We help brands sell their goods online, with a concentration on specialty brands that are very brick-and-mortar centric, but may not be experts in online retail. For those types of businesses, we offer management of their online presence, which can include everything from marketing, photography, and messaging to managing and optimizing site and marketing channels. We also make sure these brands comply with supply chain requirements for distribution.
What motivated you to start Maxton and Company?
I have a background in retail and previously worked for Target, both on the store side and ecommerce side. I felt like the time was right for more small specialty brands to have a greater online presence. Online, retailers don’t have to be limited by physical stores and shelf space and I realized this could really help small and medium brands get their products to a greater audience.
What successes have you seen so far?
We’ve seen a lot of growth. For the last two years, we’ve been on Inc. magazine’s list of America’s Fastest-Growing Private Companies. We’ve found lots of response from people who need a helping hand and guidance through the online retail landscape, which can be sort of like the Wild West. Many of our clients are retailers that came of age in the brick-and-mortar era, and they just don’t know that much about the online retail environment, so we take on that portion of their business so they can continue to concentrate on their physical markets.
What kinds of brands and products do you work with?
We work with a number of consumer goods brands—everything from shoe polish to coffee and tea to skin care products. It’s a wide assortment. Many of our brands aren’t yet known nationally, but may be known regionally or by a specific audience. We also represent some smaller international brands that may not have a distribution channel in the U.S., but people here are eager to buy their lines.
What has surprised you in your work?
How dynamic internet businesses can be. We’re in year six of business and you’d think by now everything would be very established and routine. But there are so many, constant changes in the online environment. Platforms, technologies, rules and regulations, and consumer preferences change all the time. We really can’t stand still; we must be nimble. When consumers start searching for a product online, that’s where we start to see interesting little trends.
What else would you like people to know?
We’re always here and interested in working with emerging brands, even new categories where brand owners, product developers, and designers who have deep expertise in their area of manufacturing but aren’t as familiar with the online retail space. We’re eager to talk and see how we can help those businesses.