Gibbs Case Study - Development of a New technology-driven US diet and weight loss system.
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Case Study: Tech-Driven Weight Loss Start up
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OBJECTIVE: To transform a product concept designed to curb obesity, into a commercially successful system. The a new business paradigm (a term we don't use loosely) in the multi-$billion diet and healthy eating market, must be protectable with viable Intellectual Property.

IP CHALLENGE: Research the patent space claimed by dominant weight loss products and systems companies (i.e., Weight Watchers®, Jenny Craig®, and Nutrisystem®), and identify patent "white space" into which a new technology could be successfully developed/marketed.

AND in the process, strategically engineer a strong offensive and defensive Intellectual Property position.

SOLUTION: Gibbs developed inProportion's revolutionary smartphone app, supported by a robust cloud-based database and website, and a NY Times Best Seller. Gibbs wrote and filed patents on four inventions (three more are in process) and the solution successfully delivered on four critical elements:

  1. It is the least expensive diet program in the United States (retail price);
  2. It is so easy to use, it will work for the entire family, as individuals or as a family unit;
  3. It is uniquely adaptable for use by and for obese kids who need MORE (but better) food as they grow, not less, as restricting diets can retard bone and muscular growth; and
  4. It will work anywhere, anytime (including restaurants) – without being embarrassingly obvious.

In addition, the system needed to be instantly accessible to most of the 70-100 million Americans who are dieting at any given time – 80% of which are not following a particular diet program (there are 150 million US iPhone and Android users, and growing).

A dominant component of business roll-out is the company's strategically-timed New York Times Best Seller diet book.

STATUS: Start-up phase. Qualified business and technical development teams in place. Best-seller ghost writers are standing by.

Angel funds have been invested. Now developing a celebrity endorsement/co-ownership structure and seeking $750,000-$1 million in venture round funding.

EXIT: Our market research shows that the dominant weight loss / weight management companies, in total, control only 5% of the $90 billion US market. Their growth forecast over the next three years is barely 2%. These companies are already pursuing acquisitions of differentiated diet programs as their revenue expansion means during slow growth.

By capturing 1-2% of NEW market customers (from the 80% non-diet program followers), the company anticipates a straight-forward exit by acquisition within 2-3 years.

SUPPORT: Gibbs is providing interim CEO support services during fundraising to positive cash-flow.


NAME: inProportion Inc.


FOR QUALIFIED INVESTORS: Business Summary, Operations Plan, Financials, Market Research Report.

STATUS: Pre-revenue start up. Seed round closed.

$1.25 million Funding (2 Tranches)

INDUSTRY SECTORS: Internet / Smartphone APP / Consumer Service

TECHNOLOGY: Smartphone App, Image Processing, Cloud, Member E-commerce Website

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY: Patents filed on 10 inventions: systems and methods for weight loss, menu planning, shopping list creation, and grocery store coupons.

TARGET MARKET: North America Nutrition / Diet / Weight Loss ($64bn)

TARGET CUSTOMER: 70-100 million US dieters / 150 million smartphone owners

KEY COMPETITORS: Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, Zone, Atkins, South Beach

TOTAL MARKET CLAIMED BY KEY COMPETITORS: 10 million dieters ~ $10bn (5% of market)

COMPETITORS' 3-YEAR FORECAST: 2-3% growth per year

EXIT STRATEGY: Acquisition by Key competitor (24-36 months) or IPO

PROJECTED EXIT VALUE: $12-15 million (discounted 50% from industry leaders' valuation metrics)