As Jared and Sara Springer brainstormed what business they wanted to create, they noticed many brands sold products for dogs, but not for their owners.

Once they decided to focus on pet lovers in 2016, they started, scaled, and sold their ecommerce shop — Happy Puppin —  in just three years.

To scale, they ran a mix of paid ads and organic content on social media, featuring individual products alongside funny and adorable dog memes that dog owners could easily relate to.

Jared had reached 60,000 Facebook followers when he found a small robotic bank in the shape of a dog. He started selling it and got so many orders he had to make a huge wholesale order from a supplier in China to fulfill the demand.

Despite shipping delays and winter weather, the Springers got all 5,000 orders out the door in time for Christmas.

“It was the first product to launch the Happy Puppin brand into profitability,” author Ryan Moran wrote in a profile of Springer in the book 12 Months to $1 Million: How to Pick a Winning Product, Build a Real Business, and Become a Seven-Figure Entrepreneur. “One year later, the brand had brought in a million dollars in revenue.”

Happy Puppin expanded its offerings to include supplies like beds, bowls and leashes for dogs and plenty of stuff for pet parents, including jewelry, outdoor gear and home decor.

Finding a buyer for Happy Puppin

The Springers sold Happy Puppin in April 2019 to a buyer they found through an M&A broker. Jared declined to reveal the details of the sale but said it was in the mid-7 figures. (He wouldn’t reveal the buyer’s name either, but records show the trademark holder as Eric Jorgensen.)

The sale was all part of the Springers’ plan to build and scale a startup, sell it and repeat with a new opportunity.

Jared said the process took longer than he expected, but it was still challenging to let go of something he had built over several years.

“Make sure all your records are ready for incredible scrutiny, from the time you started the business to when you are selling,” Jared advised other business owners. “We were pretty prepared because of my broker, but it was way deeper and more invasive than I thought it would be.”

They had four employees at the time of the sale, handling email, social media, customer service and media buying (advertising). Happy Puppin continued to operate post-sale and had more than 120,000 fans on Facebook when this story went live.

After selling, Jared wrote a book after selling the business, called I’ll Be Happy When: How to Lift the Happiness Curse From Your Life. Now, he’s building a marketing and consulting business.