Forbes recently spotlighted Dave Marson, owner of vegan baked-goods brand Nature’s Bakery, profiling the company’s ascent from being battered hard by the 2008 recession to having sales of his goods grow to more than $100 million with distribution at Costco, Walmart, and Whole Foods Market. Marson has even put his belief in his company’s GMO-free and vegan-certified fig bars and brownies on the line, as last month Nature’s Bakery became the primary sponsor for NASCAR driver Danica Patrick. The multi-year contract to partner with the most successful woman in the history of American open-wheel racing cost the small company $54 million, insiders estimate. “It’s the biggest risk I ever took,” Marson told Forbes. “But risk-reward is something an entrepreneur is always faced with.” GoDaddy, Patrick’s sponsor of nine years, announced its withdrawal from NASCAR last year, giving Nature’s Bakery a chance to capitalize and push for even more visibility. “We now have a super-star celebrity,” Marson said. “We now have this stepping stone to take the company from $100 million to $500 million. Literally, that’s where we’re going in the next three years.”
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