SPGBK Watches started with an initial investment of $1,500 each by Molden and his co-founder, Maurice Davis. Almost ten years later, the business’ products can be found in more than 200 retail stores thanks to partnerships with Nordstrom, Macy’s, Belk, and the MoMA Design Store.
Success did not come quickly or easily for Molden and his company, rather it was the result of persisting through challenges, consistently working hard, and believing in the unique value SPGBK Watches offers to customers.
“You have to be the King of Harlem before you can be the King of New York,” Molden stressed to students. “Leverage your network and get buy-in from your local community before you pursue global distribution. Sustainable businesses are built by repeatedly executing small releases, capturing feedback from customers, and continuously improving your product.”
“The SPGBK Watches story is ideal for students to hear directly from the founder,” said Dr. Jeremiah Nelson, the Ketner School of Business faculty member teaching Introduction to Entrepreneurship this semester. “The approach SPGBK Watches uses engaging with and seeking feedback from potential customers before a product is even available for purchase and the iterative process the company uses before dropping new products is the same entrepreneurial approach my students are learning in class.”
Dr. Sharon Sullivan, Associate Provost of the College agrees. “For students to hear directly from a successful entrepreneur reinforces Catawba’s mission of preparing students to reach their highest potential. It demonstrates that what students are learning in class is the real-life way that successful companies develop products and services to address the needs, wants, and desires of their customers."
Freshman Catawba student and YouTube content creator Namaurion Koontz was inspired. He shared that “Mr. Molden opened up my eyes to different ways to use my creativity to achieve greatness.”
After class, Molden demonstrated the power of networking in real time as he connected one student with a product idea with Koontz, who is an influencer with an established following, and a third student who is a photographer. He pointed out that by working together, all three students will benefit.
SPGBK Watches is a designer watch company that is proudly Black-owned, HBCU-made, and designed in North Carolina. For more information visit springbreakwatches.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Ralph W. Ketner School of Business at Catawba College is recognized as a 2022-2023 Business College of Distinction for its commitment to engaging students, quality teaching, vibrant community, and successful student outcomes. For more information visit catawba.edu/KSOB.