25 Mar 2020
LAIKI was just an idea a few years back – an idea that came after I graduated from Sasin School of Management. Today it is distributed in more than 6,000 stores in North America, including the second largest retailer in the world. Congratulations to Pradeep Akkunoor, Sasin MBA 2009, CEO and Founder of LAIKI Crackers, who recently received the BEST CEO Award for Young Entrepreneurs from Thansettakij Best CEOs Awards 2020. Shortly after receiving the award, Pradeep explained that LAIKI has a strong foundation that can survive an economic crisis and continue to grow in this tough business environment. The foundation lies in innovation and innovation on three layers. The basic foundation of the product is that the rice comes from Thailand. The second layer of innovation is from the business, from the company, from the idea, on how they use the rice to create an easy to eat snack with just three simple ingredients. The third layer of innovation comes in the way they run their business. LAIKI set up a globally distributed company where most of the team members are located around the world and they work remotely. The team also came up with a new idea on how to target and sell to different consumer groups. “And the credit for this achievement, goes to, number one, my team,” said Pradeep. “I think even though CEOs win the award, it’s the team that runs the business on a day-to-day basis. Number two, of course, to my corporate upbringing that started at Sasin as a manager. And I would like to thank my professor, Dr. Fenwick, as well as all my Sasin teammates. It’s my second home in Thailand. And the basic foundation of course for any individual is the family. And I think to be able to stand here and to speak to all of you, I’m really thankful to my family, my parents, my sisters, my wife and my daughter. Everyone is going through a challenging time, but if we focus on creating a strong foundation of the company, we can survive and continue to grow in this tough business environment.” In November 2019, LAIKI Inc. closed its Series A1 equity round and welcomed Santosh Padki to its Board of Directors. LAIKI has rapidly expanded its distributor store count from 1,000 to over 6,000. LAIKI offers wholesome, nutrient-dense, better-for-you crackers, made from 100% whole grain rice, in unique black and red varieties. Its deliciously crunchy crackers are vegan, gluten-free, and free from key allergens. They are available at over 6,000 locations worldwide.
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