Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Rootine.
Rachel Sanders: I started my career in investment banking focused on the healthcare sector prior to getting my MBA from Harvard Business School. Through both my personal and professional experiences, I recognized the importance of nutrition in improving and maintaining health. A mentor of mine introduced me to Dr. Daniel Wallerstorfer, PhD, who is a biotechnologist and has spent the last decade building innovation solutions at the intersection of technology, nutrition, and genetics. He shares a similar belief that nutrition really has the power to help people long term. We joined together to launch Rootine, with the mission of solving nutrition for every individual.
How does Rootine innovate?
Rachel Sanders: Unlike other companies, Rootine is a personalized nutrition system that combines science with health and wellness data to identify unique nutrition needs and delivers convenient products to provide real health benefits. Plus, Rootine helps subscribers track progress over time.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Rachel Sanders: The global pandemic has made consumers more aware of their health and has sought out brands that can really make a difference in their lives.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Rachel Sanders: As a startup, the economic environment and funding landscape is always important to keep an eye on and better understand. Given the uncertainty, we have made some operational and financing changes to better prepare our business for the long term.
How do you deal with stress and anxiety? How do you project yourself and Rootine in the future?
Rachel Sanders: Stress and anxiety are constants for startup founders. To keep me mentally healthy, I try to move every day (even if it just to walk my dog) and continuously ensure I am getting the best nutrition for my body. Adequate vitamin and mineral levels have been clinically shown to impact stress and anxiety, so I also ensure I take my Rootine daily nutrient packs every day.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Rachel Sanders: Personalized nutrition is a fast-growing market with significant tailwinds, and there will continue to be new entrants. We will continue to take increasing market share by utilizing our unique assets: world-class personalization technology, biotech and clinical expertise, and brand.
Your final thoughts?
Rachel Sanders: Startups and startup founders have to be agile and able to pivot at any moment. COVID-19 has certainly created a unique business landscape, but this is no different: we have to learn how to adapt. COVID-19 has also highlighted the importance of health and prevention, and specifically in the US, highlighted the glaring opportunities around the need for further innovation.