A breakfast shake launched by Bond Transformer student, Ryan Carroll and his naturopath father Jason has proven to be a surprising health food hit – so much so, the company is now hungry for a share of the Chinese market.
Ideal Breakfast Shake, which was launched in 2015, is described as a combination of whey protein, antioxidant-rich berries, herbs and superfoods including acai, goji, chia, pomegranate, elderberries and cranberries, blended to form a protein powder suitable for use as both a breakfast cereal replacement and post-workout recovery supplement.
Ryan, who is a former competitive surf lifesaver, currently in his second semester studying a Bachelor of Commerce at Bond University, said he and his father came up with the idea for the shake while looking for a way to stay healthy after ending his surf lifesaving career.
“There were a few elite protein powders for athletes and we saw a space for a product for the average person who needed it,” he said.
Ryan is now CEO and co-owner of Ideal Breakfast Shake, juggling his studies alongside making pitches to potential investors and stockists, and planning the next steps for the company.
“Mixing it with my personal life has been difficult, it’s taken all my time away from studying,” he said.
Expansion into the Chinese market sometime within the next three months is now a possibility, thanks to the connections Ryan made while working in collaboration with Transformer, Bond University’s fee-free entrepreneurship program.
Transformer put Ryan in touch with another Bond University student with connections with a Chinese importation company, alongside helping with testing, focus groups and legal assistance.
As well as expanding offshore, Ryan said the company was looking at growing its range of products to include protein bars and other ready-to-go items.
He said the response to Ideal Breakfast Shake had been “overwhelming” – the product is sold nationwide, with its strongest markets being Western Australia, the Gold Coast, and the Mid North Coast of New South Wales.
“The market size we thought we’d be tapping was fairly niche but we’ve basically become a mainstream product.”