A group of young entrepreneurs are hitting the flavored malt beverage market and proving that Sech’s sells.
Gabriele Galli, Mason Estep and Shea Wilson of Sech’s introduced Sech’s Bombacious Berry — a 24-fluid-ounce flavored malt beverage that is 8 percent alcohol by volume made with berry and ginger — just over a month ago. Now it is being sold at stores around Ohio State’s campus.
“We try to encompass a ‘cocktail in a can’ concept that aims to mimic the Dirty Shirley flavor,” said Galli, co-founder of Sech’s.
Galli, a fourth-year in marketing, said the company wanted to create something that people his age could enjoy without breaking the bank.
“We wanted to introduce a high-quality product that was in a college student’s budget,” he said.
Co-founder Estep said the name Sech’s, pronounced “sex,” was inspired by beverages with peculiar names that his mom would drink.
“We said, ‘Let’s call it Sech’s because sex sells,’” Estep said.
The next steps were researching the trademark and finding a place to sell their product.
Estep, vice president of Sech’s and a recent graduate of Ohio University, said he approached the owner of Mike’s Dog Shack, a beverage store at OU. The owner told him, “If you start it, I’ll sell it.”
“That was all we needed to hear, and now we sell out every weekend at OU,” he said.
Near OSU’s campus, Sech’s can be found at many locations, including Big Bar, Midway, Bullwinkles and Ugly Tuna Saloona. A complete list of locations can be found on the company’s website.
“When we walk into these stores, they are very impressed,” Estep said. “They are entrepreneurs themselves, and they can relate to us.”
Sech’s is looking to expand its distribution, beginning this fall at the University of Cincinnati. The company also plans to roll out “Morning Sech’s Mimosa” in 2017.
Beyond its sales in stores and bars, Sech’s is trying other ways to connect with students.
“We’re teaming up with Columbus Social Club for a Valentine’s Day singles party,” Galli said. “We plan on doing events for St. Patrick’s Day and for spring break also.”
Estep said the company is also looking to work with the Greek life on campus.
“We look to team up with frats, sororities and student organizations, and we will work directly with them to develop Sech’s parties,” he said.
They also sell ‘I Just Had Sech’s’ T-shirts and former OSU running back Ezekiel Elliott-inspired Sech’s crop tops.
“As a company, we’re not afraid of anything,” Estep said.
Wilson, the president of the company, said Sech’s is a great model for following your dreams.
“If you want to be an entrepreneur, follow your heart and do what you want to do,” he said. “We fell down a million times, but we persevered and we made it happen.”
Editor’s Note: This story was updated on Feb. 5 to properly credit the photos as courtesy of Maggie Wehri.