Even though it can be intimidating, you should never be afraid to reach out to the people who inspire you. You’ll never know what sorts of opportunities can present themselves when you put yourself out there.
That’s the lesson 9-year-old Alex Munoz learned after he sent a letter to KIND Snacks founder and CEO Daniel Lubetzky asking whether he had considered taking the company public.
I have been researching your company and I want invest. I’m investing a lot of companies. We also buy your product. I will be getting all of my money at my Bar Mitzvah. I’m a Colombian Jew and I know you’re a Mexican Jew. I’m 9-years-old and I live in Weston, MA. Do you know when you will go public? I think you will do well. Are there any plans of going public? I like your idea of public action and supporting charities.
P.S. My favorite is the peanut butter dark chocolate. I’m eating one right now.
Lubetzky was so inspired by the note that he invited Alex, along with his mom and older sister, to visit the KIND HQ in New York City. There, he surprised the thrilled soon-to-be fourth grader by making him CFO for the day -- complete with his own business cards -- and presented him with 10 shares of the company, making him the youngest shareholder the business has ever had, as Lubetzky put it, “by a long shot.”
Alex said that when he wrote the letter, he never expected a reply. “I thought he was just going to send us like free KIND bars, or like a $10 coupon or something,” he said. Alex said he figured the company would be worth investing in because “they were a really fast growing company … they are more healthy and people these days like more healthy stuff.” He said that also liked that the company donated to charity.
When the pair met, Lubetzky asked the young aspiring entrepreneur why he thought KIND should go public. “Because you can make more money and spend it on expanding or the charities," Alex said. "And you can make commercials and more KIND bars.”
Lubetzky said that for the time being, the company would stay private in order “to think long term,” but he said he loved getting the letter, especially due to Alex spelling Lubetzky’s name correctly -- with help from his mom, of course.
Before he revealed the big surprises, the CEO had some advice for Alex about dreaming big: “I hope in your entire life you’ll always take risks. You always go for what you believe in and you always have the courage to write letters to whoever you want to write and just push for your dreams. And if things don’t go the way you want that you get up and just try again.”