P-Pods by Ponix
Tell us about your business.Ponix is a development-stage startup that grew out of SHADE Consulting, a green roof consulting firm I started in 2002 with my wife Wendy. Our mission was to partner with public, private and non-profit organizations to transform unused roof spaces into green roofs and micro-gardens. We also marketed two different green roof modules that I designed. Although we were ahead of our time, my involvement in the industry continued and influenced the business model of Ponix. When we moved to New York City in 2009, the need to create a serious plant enclosure literally hit home. Our 35th-floor balcony was a test bed for my hand-made prototypes of the P-Pods, protecting our herbs from the wind and cold. After I finalized the design, I started Ponix on Earth Day 2013 to begin getting P-Pods manufactured and to market. The goal of Ponix is to positively impact the future of micro-gardening and urban farming technology through the development of a line of horticultural products based on P-Pods.
What makes your business stand out?Ponix is a science-based company, applying advanced engineering principles to the creation of its micro-gardening products. Providing plants with a nurturing environment in such a small package requires a special approach. A well-grounded knowledge of how to identify and address specific horticultural, functional, and manufacturing challenges was essential to the creation of the P-Pods. Their simple design's features are a product of my mechanical engineering experience, with the result being a heated plant enclosure with a unique appearance and functionality. My approach also considers economics a critical engineering factor. P-Pods must be affordable for micro-gardening and profitable for larger scale urban farming. The P-Pods' manufacturing and delivery costs are minimized while also reducing its environmental impact. Being able to grow Ponix by creatively developing its products directly and also understanding the industry it will transform is an exceptional position to be in.
What's the best business advice you've received?Keep all of your options open because results do not always make sense.
Mark Your Calendar
NominationsJune 3–Aug. 29, 2014
Nominate yourself or other aspiring makers.Nominate yourself
JudgingJune 23–Sept. 8, 2014
Judges will select finalists throughout this period.Meet the judges
Online VotingSept. 15–Oct. 13, 2014
Vote for your favorite American makers.See the finalists
Winners AnnouncedOct. 17, 2014
2014 Award Winners and Audience Choice Winner announced.See past Award Winners
American Made EventNov. 7–8, 2014
Join us for our annual event in New York City.Buy tickets now