Entrepreneur partners with local businesses to deliver specialty products
When COVID-19 hit, a Montecito resident saw the heavy blows to small, local businesses — and with it, an opportunity to help.
Guy Solan moved to the city in 2012 and started a wine delivery business. He said selling wine online allows for shoppers to choose from many more products than they would in a store, but delivering the wine is challenging due to high shipping costs, fragility, packaging and an inconsistent delivery window.
He wanted to be able to provide customers with a specific day and time they would receive their order.
Once the city locked down because of the global pandemic, online retail skyrocketed for chain grocery stores, but Mr. Solan saw local businesses still struggling to stay afloat.
“There were a lot of small food businesses that were really getting hammered or closing completely,” he said. “I thought, maybe there’s an opportunity there to connect these small food businesses with people.”
He noticed that the delivery of specialty foods faced a logistical problem — for example, there’s only so much fresh bread someone can buy at once. However, Mr. Solan decided to bring multiple specialty food businesses together to create the perfect combinations.
Now he has launched “Landed Home Delivery,” which offers home delivery of artisan breads and pastries, fresh produce, grass-fed meats and other perishables. His local partners include California Juice Co., Breadbar, Centri Coffee, Ventura Meat Co., Calioh Coffee and Landed Wine.
Customers log on to the website and create their fresh order from the following categories: bakery, dairy, fruit, vegetables, flowers, juice bar, butcher, coffee and wine. Then they can choose from scheduled delivery windows starting from the next day to a week in advance, availability dependent.
From there, Mr. Solan and one other individual assisting him pick up the products in the morning and deliver them in the afternoon.
“My role in the delivery is really the connection between small businesses and customers,” he said. “I don’t look at myself as a retailer with their products. I’m offering their items and able to deliver them.”
He added that Santa Barbara is a city that he thinks could benefit from a service like this.
“For a town like this, there are a lot of options with restaurants and specialty food,” he said. “I think small business is something that people like, and they like the options they have in their neighborhood or city.
“We’re all in the same boat going through the same challenges,” Mr. Solan continued. “I think that’s really motivated and inspired me to work on this because I feel a real partnership with the companies that I’m working with and our customers really benefit from them doing well.”
Noelle Strogoff, a Santa Barbara resident, ordered from Landed Home Delivery for the first time on Friday, purchasing fresh bread, tarts and some wine. She said the service was great.
“I like it because I’m a single mom at home with three kids and it makes my life easier,” Ms. Strogoff said. “I am very happy to support local businesses and local people in this time especially. It just seems like a good thing to do.”
The co-owner and co-founder of Breadbar, Ali Chalabi, said the company welcomed the cooperation.
“The synergy between wine, cheese and bread is essential, and Landed Wine provides the right option that aficionados in Santa Barbara have been looking for,” he said. “We have a loyal and dedicated fan base in Santa Barbara and with this new option, they will be able to enjoy the right pairing. We love what Guy is doing and support him in his rollout.”
Geoff Crosby, the owner and founder of California Juice Co., echoed this praise, saying it fills the customer void typically occupied by corporations and high-end hotels.
“Obviously in these times, people are looking for solutions where they can get delivery and are looking for high quality products,” Mr. Crosby said. “It helps me to get a new distribution partner. I’m excited to start increasing revenue.”
For Centri Coffee, product specialist Will Shepherd said Landed Home Delivery helps the company achieve its goal of “providing fresh, roasted coffee to the community.”
“We’ve noticed that consumers have changed where they’re drinking their coffee, from cafes, hotels and schools to the home,” he said. “Landed Home Delivery is bridging the gap between us and where people find themselves now which is at home. It’s an essential service.”
To learn more about Landed Home Delivery and/or order local specialty products, visit landedwine.com.