Shopify announces winners from its first ever ‘BEASTMODE-A-Business’ competition

Leading commerce platform partnered with NFL running back Marshawn Lynch to teach entrepreneurial skills to Bay Area teens

Oakland, CA, 2017-Jul-24 — /EPR Retail News/ — Shopify Inc. (NYSE:SHOP)(TSX:SHOP), the leading cloud-based, multi-channel commerce platform designed for small and medium-sized businesses, today (July 17, 2017) announced winners from its first ever ‘BEASTMODE-A-Business’ competition, in partnership with Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch, theFam 1st Family Foundation, and Hingeto.

Based on the success of his Shopify Plus Beast Mode® apparel store, Marshawn chose to partner with Shopify to create BEASTMODE-A-Business, a one-of-a-kind, entrepreneurial readiness program for Bay Area high school students. Over the course of three days, 30 local students attended workshops and seminars at Oakland Technical High School that covered a cross-section of skills required to start a business, and had the opportunity to build their own online ecommerce stores on the Shopify platform. Content included hearing from special guest speakers on how to create a powerful brand, craft effective messaging, and other educational seminars that supported the idea that with the right tools and mindset, anyone can become an entrepreneur.  The program culminated with each student pitching their business ideas in front of family, friends, and a panel of judges which included staff and merchants from Shopify, Marshawn, and Josh Johnson, quarterback for New York Giants.

“Growing up in Oakland taught me a lot about being focused and driven, but my experience didn’t really prepare me for building my business and other aspects of my career,” shared Marshawn. “I wanted to extend what I have been able to teach kids from my neighborhood on the football field and give them more skills that empower them to believe that anything is possible.”

Simone Hufana, 17 from San Leandro high school in San Leandro, and Mathew Galvez, 17 from Abraham Lincoln high school in San Jose, were the overall winners of the ‘BEASTMODE-A-Business’ competition.  They both won free Shopify Basic for three years, an opportunity to have their pop-up store hosted by Beast Mode Apparel in Oakland, deskspace at Hingeto, AdWords and Facebook Dynamic Ads credits, design credits with a Shopify Plus expert agency, as well as on-going product design and full marketing setup support.  The final eight received free Shopify Basic for two years, KIT basic for a year, AdWords credit, and an exclusive prize package from Bold Commerce that includes unlimited use Bold Apps for a year, a comprehensive site audit and consultation ($1,000 value), and $6,000 in developer design credit.  For participating in the program, all 30 students also received free Chromebook laptops preloaded with documentation on building a Shopify store, free Shopify Basic for a year, backpacks filled with school supplies, as well as clothing from Beast Mode apparel.

“I started my first company when I was 13 years old and what I learned from that experience has shaped who I am today – both personally and professionally,” said Harley Finkelstein, COO of Shopify. “I believe that teaching these students the skills and mindset they need to start their own entrepreneurial journey is an experience that will help them throughout their lives and careers.”

About Shopify

Shopify is the leading cloud-based, multi-channel commerce platform designed for small and medium-sized businesses. Merchants can use the software to design, set up, and manage their stores across multiple sales channels, including web, mobile, social media, marketplaces and physical retail locations. The platform also provides merchants with a powerful back-office and a single view of their business. The Shopify platform was engineered for reliability and scale, making enterprise-level technology available to businesses of all sizes. Shopify currently powers hundreds of thousands of businesses in approximately 175 countries and is trusted by brands such as Tesla, Nestle, GE, Red Bull, Kylie Cosmetics, and many more.

About Fam 1st Family Foundation

Fam 1st Family Foundation was started in 2006, but made official in March 2011. Fam 1st strives to improve the lives of children by mentoring them on the importance of education, literacy and self-esteem. Fam 1st was founded by Joshua Johnson and Marshawn Lynch who have overcome a significant amount of adversity to become the successful businessmen and community leaders they are today. Fam 1st provides unique opportunities and programs for the youth to help them succeed in life, and has developed programming and camps focusing on computer science, architecture, literacy, entrepreneurship, and more. For more information, please visit http://fam1stfamilyfoundation.org/.

About Hingeto

Oakland based company, Hingeto is a Y-combinator backed company helping brands take inventory risk out of retail. They have two key solutions. 1) Working with brands like Marshawn Lynch’s Beast Mode to design & sell new on-demand products and 2) powering custom dropship systems for large retailers like PacSun; which they will soon release a Shopify app for.  Hingeto is a key solution for any company trying to grow its product assortment without inventory risk; which they believe is the future. Very soon Hingeto will debut their Shopify app to help stores add curated dropship products direct to their Shopify stores. Go to shopify.hingeto.com to join the waitlist.

SOURCE: Shopify

Seahawks Marshawn Lynch surprised baristas at a Bellevue Starbucks

SEATTLE, 2015-11-20 — /EPR Retail News/ — Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch surprised baristas at a Bellevue Starbucks and thanked them for making his namesake beverage in support of his foundation.

Lynch strolled behind the bar, gave baristas Beast Mode™ brand merchandise and donned a green apron complete with a handwritten “BeastMode” name tag.

That’s not the first time the Seahawks running back wore an iconic Starbucks green apron. In October, Lynch spent time in the Starbucks headquarters co-creating the Beast Mode™ Frappuccino® blended beverage.

The beverage is available during the rest of the football season in Starbucks® stores in Washington state and Oakland to benefit Lynch’s foundation. For every Beast Mode Frappuccino purchased, Starbucks will donate 24 cents – which coincides with his jersey number – to the Fam 1st Family Foundation, up to $100,000. Starbucks kicked off the new collaboration with a $24,000 contribution to the foundation.

“It’s incredible the impact we can make on people’s lives and 24 cents can turn into thousands of dollars for his foundation,” said Katie Akers, a seven-year Starbucks partner (employee) and store manager of the location Lynch visited.

Like Lynch, Starbucks is on a mission to support young people with a focus on 16- to 24-year-olds who are not in school and are not employed. There are nearly 6 million people in the U.S. today in that demographic. They’re often called “opportunity youth” because not only are they seeking opportunity, but they represent untapped opportunity for businesses needing new talent.

“Some of my most successful partners have been in that group,” said Jonah Lewis, who has been a Starbucks manager in the Bellevue area for seven years.

Lewis said he was 22 years old when he became a Starbucks store manager, and the “greatest part” of his job is being able to hire someone and give them an opportunity.

“It’s inspirational to work for a company that positions itself as a forum to use our resources and our assets to better the community,” Lewis added.

Starbucks has committed to hiring 10,000 Opportunity Youth by 2018, and is part of a coalition of more than 30 companies that collectively plan to hire 100,000 in the next five years.

For more information on this news release, contact the Starbucks Newsroom.

SOURCE: Starbucks Corporation

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Seahawks Marshawn Lynch surprised baristas at a Bellevue Starbucks

Seahawks Marshawn Lynch surprised baristas at a Bellevue Starbucks

Marshawn Lynch teams up with Starbucks to introduce the Beast Mode™ Frappuccino® blended beverage

SEATTLE, 2015-10-21 — /EPR Retail News/ — Marshawn Lynch approached the fun challenge of creating a new Starbucks Frappuccino® blended beverage to benefit his foundation with the same decisive action that’s made him one of the NFL’s top running backs.

Lynch, sporting a Starbucks green apron in a test lab deep inside the company’s Seattle headquarters, began mixing Frappuccino flavor combinations that have never been tried before.

As the Seattle Seahawks star sipped a double chocolate Frappuccino with added protein powder and some raspberry drizzle, he flashed a satisfied grin. Lynch was getting closer to the final blend for a new beverage that will take on his nickname – Beast Mode.

“I’d drink this before a workout,” Lynch said. “You could get your buff on with this.”

Though Lynch focused on the task of developing a new Frappuccino beverage, his mind was also on the ultimate goal of helping to empower more inner-city youth in his hometown of Oakland, California and throughout the U.S.

Marshawn Lynch has teamed up with Starbucks to introduce the Beast Mode™ Frappuccino® blended beverage, to be sold during the rest of the football season in Starbucks® stores in Washington state and Oakland to benefit his foundation.

Lynch and Buffalo Bills quarterback Joshua Johnson cofounded the Fam 1st Family Foundation in 2011 to mentor underprivileged youth on the importance of education, literacy and self-esteem. The foundation conducts free summer football camps, hosts talent shows, collects back-to-school supplies and donates food and toys during the holidays to those in need.

Through the foundation, Lynch said he’s been able to see students “who came from so little” get hands-on learning experiences and go on to do well in school and excel in college. Recently, a student who attended the Fam 1st Family Foundation’s architecture summer camp earned a scholarship to a prestigious program.

“It is so important to Josh and me that these kids are able to excel in school and life against all odds,” said Lynch.

The Perfect Combination of Two Missions

The combination of Lynch and Starbucks is as perfect as the blend of chocolate and mint in the new Beast Mode™ Frappuccino.

Like Lynch, Starbucks is on a mission to support young people with a focus on 16- to 24-year-olds who are not in school and are not employed. There are nearly 6 million people in the U.S. today in that demographic. They’re often called “opportunity youth” because not only are they seeking opportunity, but they represent untapped opportunity for businesses needing new talent. Starbucks has committed to hiring 10,000 Opportunity Youth by 2018.

In addition, Starbucks is working with other like-minded companies to collectively hire 100,000 opportunity youth over the next three years. The 100,000 Opportunities Initiative held its first job fair and forum in Chicago this summer, resulting in more than 800 job offers from 30 companies.  The coalition expects to find work for hundreds more young adults through the next Opportunity Youth Hiring Fair and Forum in Phoenix on October 30.

“When you believe in a young person, you’re opening up a pathway to meaningful employment and lifelong opportunity,” said Blair Taylor, Starbucks chief community officer. “We are thrilled to be working with Marshawn and his foundation as we collectively work towards supporting youth who are not just looking for a second chance, but the opportunity to dream big and win.”

What’s in a Beast Mode Frappuccino?

Starbucks and Marshawn Lynch invite fans to support empowering young people through the purchase of the new Beast Mode™ Frappuccino, available in participating Starbucks® stores beginning October 22.

For every Beast Mode™ Frappuccino® blended beverage sold throughout the football season in Washington and Oakland, Starbucks will donate 24 cents – which coincides with Lynch’s number – to the Fam 1st Family Foundation, up to $100,000. Starbucks will kick off the new collaboration and beverage with a minimum $24,000 contribution to the foundation.

The new blended beverage, as unique as its creator, is a double mocha Frappuccino with a hint of mint and cream and just enough protein powder to unleash your inner Beast Mode. It’s topped with whipped cream, then finished with a purple berry drizzle and a sprinkle of matcha.

“I’m all ‘bout that,” said Lynch, as he signed off on the official recipe.

Video and photo downloads

For more information on this news release, contact the Starbucks Newsroom.

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Marshawn Lynch teams up with Starbucks to introduce the Beast Mode™ Frappuccino® blended beverage

Marshawn Lynch teams up with Starbucks to introduce the Beast Mode™ Frappuccino® blended beverage