About Cardinal Bites
- Founders: Zhasmina Gevezieva, Yonko Chuklev, Mariya Sbirkova and the Bulgarian Innovation Starter Accelerator
- Founded in: 2020
- Employees: 1
- Money raised: €10,000 via pre-seed funding
- Ultimate goal: To make the very first all-natural, protein-rich snacks without added sugars but with probiotics added instead
During the COVID-19 pandemic in May 2020, Zhasmina Gevezieva, Yonko Chuklev, and Mariya Sbirkova formed their own company together with the help of the Bulgarian Innovation Starter Accelerator. The pandemic did not prevent them from launching a new product: Delicious snacks that are low in calories and high in protein to maintain muscle mass.
What distinguishes your ‘bites’ from other products on the market?
“Although there are already products out there on the market that contain a lot of protein in the form of, say, protein bars, there is something else that sets Cardinal Bites’ products apart from these products. We add probiotics to ur snacks, namely Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus. Probiotics are widely recognized for their positive effect on the intestinal flora.”
Cardinal Bites is the first company to add probiotics to sweet snacks.
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Why did you decide to add probiotics to your products?
“The decision to add probiotics to our products is mainly due to the country where we started the company, Bulgaria. In fact, Bulgarian yogurt is one of the oldest foods that probiotics are added to. This means that research and use of probiotics in the country is already highly advanced. We also chose to add probiotics because it enhances the Bulgarian flavors of the products.”
What kind of snacks do you have on offer at the moment?
“The first bites we made and tested were flavored with Bulgarian rose and stone fruit. We sold 700 packs of these prototypes in just two days. We aim to sell the final version of our products from September onwards. Initially, the products will be available at fitness clubs and organic coffee places. After that, we also hope to sell our products in stores that are focused on healthy food.”
What can we expect from you over the coming years?
“In future, we are hoping for recognition of the significance of our products and how much they contribute to overall health. We are currently in the process of testing the second flavor of our sweet snack. We are also developing new products that are high in protein. Plus, we hope to be able to add bread to our product line soon too.”
Through the hard work of the Cardinal Bites employees, the company is clearly laying the foundation for its business during this pandemic.
Would you like to read more about start-ups? You can find all the other articles in this IO series here.