How a Label-Making Business Sold for $12 Million: Mabel’s Labels

Apple Podcasts

About Our Guest

Julie Cole is a recovered lawyer, mom of six, and co-founder of Mabel’s Labels.

Julie is an award-winning entrepreneur, best-selling and award-winning author and media personality, having appeared on NBC’s The Today Show, CNN, HLN’s Raising America, Breakfast Television, The Marilyn Denis Show, CP24, and CityLine, among many others. Her articles have appeared in The Huffington Post, Today’s Parent, The Globe and Mail, Profit Magazine, Working Mother Magazine, and numerous websites.

Julie’s awards include RBC Woman Entrepreneur Award for Excellence in Entrepreneurship, PROFIT/Chatelaine W100, PROFIT 500 list of Fastest Growing Companies, RBC Woman Entrepreneur Momentum Award, Iris Entrepreneur of the Year Award, and many more.

When Julie is not juggling her busy family and professional life, she is an engaged community member serving on boards and volunteering. She is passionate about women’s issues, mentoring young entrepreneurs, and social justice.

About this Episode

How a Label-Making Business Sold for $12 Million: Mabel’s Labels

From making labels in a basement with three other moms to a 20,000 square foot facility with 60 full-time staff, Julie Cole and her three co-founders built Mabel’s Labels from the ground up – literally.

This mom of six helped identify a market need, tap into the right channels to build their brand, and secure a $12M acquisition with a buyer who kept the staff, culture, and identity of the business.

Julie’s story showcases the risks and rewards of co-founding a business – especially with relatives. She shares how to navigate the potential pitfalls of shareholder agreements, ensuring your business is adequately managed – and walk away with some stellar parenting tips to boot!

What you will learn in this episode

  • The pros and cons of having co-founders
  • The foundations of building strong EBITDA
  • The best way to deliver the “I’m selling the business” message to your staff
  • Julie’s negotiation that added $100K + to the selling price

Connect with Julie Cole

Show Notes

(2:14) Julie was one of four co-founders, all related. These four moms juggled jobs, day care, and maternity leave while making labels in a basement.

(8:57) Thinking about opening a business with co-founders? The best thing you can do is get a shareholder agreement.

(14:00) Julie strongly believes you should know what your plan for exit is as it will help frame how you manage your business.

(21:58) After being in business for 14 years, the quartet received an out of the blue call from big label company, Avery. It took five months from the first dinner to close.

(35:43) Keep your house in order, so you don’t lose anything on the table and risk having your buyer walk away. This is the golden rule of M&A.

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