We had the good fortune of connecting with Shawn Kim and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Shawn, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I actually wasn’t thinking of starting a business in the very beginning. I created the very first batch of Fresh Peaches Toilet Paper Gel because I couldn’t find a solution that worked for me. Most of my life I used toilet paper, and after 30 years, I had to admit it was a subpar solution to getting you fresh. I then tried wet wipes and I enjoyed them! Finally I could get fresh without feeling like I was using sandpaper. However, I quickly learned that even the “flushable” wipes weren’t actually flushable and they aren’t eco-friendly. That was when my dilemma started. Once I experienced the pristine feeling after wiping with wet wipes, I couldn’t go back to dry toilet paper, and I couldn’t with good conscience keep using wet wipes (and in constant fear of my pipes exploding). This is when I knew I had to try to create my own solution. My criteria for a successful solution needed to work with your existing toilet paper, biodegradable, super safe ingredients, flushable, and portable. After taking a crash course in chemistry, I created the first batch of Fresh Peaches in my kitchen, and it worked! It solved all my problems and with the 2 part system it was super portable, you never know when nature will call. After enjoying the product myself, I started sharing the product with my friends and family. It was when I started to hear they also loved the product, was when I started to think maybe this could be a business. The next step was an actual proof of concept with real customers. Shopify and Facebook make it easy to set up a quick proof of concept website and ads. As a result, I was able to quickly test and validate there was indeed demand for Fresh Peaches Toilet Paper Gel as a wet wipe alternative.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
If I think about my career, I believe I was the most effective and added the most value when I was entrepreneurial. In corporate roles, I’ve created new roles, new company offerings, and created new ways of operating. To me, entrepreneurship comes down to empathizing with real world problems and people, and then finding solutions that actually impact lives for the better. For me, Fresh Peaches Wet Wipe Alternative has been an incredible journey because my customers say that this product has improved their lives. In terms of satisfaction, there isn’t anything better that knowing your hard work is making a positive impact. I also love that I get to say that my product is better for you and better for the environment.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
It would be a lot of food because that’s my favorite activity hands down. I’d take them to Mario’s Deli in Glendale for the bad boy pastrami sandwich and then Cafe Bravo for the kebabs. We’d go to Din Tai Fung for the best soup dumplings and ice cold beers. Then I’d take them to the Glenmark Hotel Rooftop for some cocktails, firepits, hookah, and a great view. We’d go to arts district for Bavel for dinner, Salt n Straw for dessert, and Death & Co. for more the best cocktails. We’d have to do several days of my favorite Ktown restaurants like BCD, MDK noodles, Pao Jao, Haemaru, and Jinsol.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’d love to recognize my wife and friends who helped me pack boxes and fill bottles in the early days. I would also like to give a shoutout to the mentors and advisors who have been there to help me navigate building a company. Building a business for the first time isn’t easy, so having mentors and advisors has been incredible.

Website: freshpeaches.co

Instagram: @freshpeaches.co

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