Matthew Hodgkin (Left) and Dr. Bob Bayer (Right)
UBC: What would it mean to you and to your business to win the UMaine Business Challenge?
LobsteRx: Winning this challenge would give us means and even more motivation to take our business to the next level. This challenge will also give us publicity, which may help us find investors. The consultation provided will help us identify the target markets and gain more business savvy that will allow our business to succeed.
UBC: You have many challenges on your road to entrepreneurship and to conquer these will inevitably take hard work and dedication. With that in mind, what is the inspiration behind starting your own business?
LobsteRx: The inspiration comes from the lobster industry, which is a vital part of the economic and cultural heritage of Maine’s coastal communities So much lobster byproduct every year is wasted and we plan on using that waste to create products that will have great impact in the United States and the world. In doing so, we’ll bolster the economic viability of the lobster industry thus helping sustain Maine’s fishing families, some of the hardest working people we know.
UBC: Part of the mission of the UBC is to take Maine from 51 to 35 on best states for business. Why have you decided to start your business in Maine?
LobsteRx: We decided to start our business in Maine because the fishery is already established here, which accounts for over 80% of the U.S. lobster landings. In addition, due to a recent change in regulations, the lobster processing sector is poised for great growth in Maine. Our company will be created to use the waste from processing and to utilize the infrastructure already available to us, including the expertise here at the University of Maine. Our business can grow and create many jobs, and without a doubt we will help change those stats for Maine.
UBC: We love our Alma Mater, so we have to ask, what’s your favorite thing about UMaine?
LobsteRx: For our business, the Lobster Institute is the best part of UMaine. The Institute, along with the innovative atmosphere of the entire campus, has opened many opportunities and avenues for successful entrepreneurship. One partner in our business is a UMaine alumna and one is a current student. Go Black Bears!