Mike Evans, a 33-year-old Black entrepreneur from St. Louis, Missouri, is the founder of Alibi Cookies which he started by selling cookies through a vending machine and has eventually scaled up to multiple storefronts. Evans, who used to work in the restaurant industry, was among the numerous people who lost their jobs due to the pandemic. During that time, he sat down and thought of other income sources. That’s when he recalled his previous idea of a Japanese vending machine so he invested in one that dispenses cookies.
“I was scrolling through Facebook and saw that in Japan there’s something like two machines for every human, and you can get anything out of a vending machine. So, I contacted a builder in Japan, and I said, ‘Hey, this is my idea, this is what I want it to do and this is how I want it to be designed,'” Evans told Voyage STL.
With the first vending machine he started in 2020, Evans was able to generate a profit of $40,000. Encouraged by this success, he decided to expand his business and opened a storefront location across St. Louis. He still retained his vending machines as he expanded to three storefronts with plans to add more storefronts and vending machines.
Every Alibi Cookies storefront and vending machine offers delectable cookies that are always warm. It comes in different flavors including chocolate chunk, and oatmeal raisin as well as unique flavors such as double chocolate mint, pumpkin spice, and deluxe apple pie, among others. They also accept orders online and have it delivered in several states.
As a 33-year-old entrepreneur, Evans has more plans to grow the business, targeting to reach $1 million in yearly revenue in 2023. And he is proud to have successfully started the business in his own hometown from just a small concept to bigger achievements.
“It’s crazy to me that some of the people I went to school with that got straight A’s and went to college — they’re not on the same level as me now. They don’t own their own business. That’s something I think about all the time. People say, ‘Oh, you gotta go to college,’ and ‘You didn’t go to college, so you’re not gonna be anything.’ And I’m just like, ‘I’m some inner-city Black kid, and I’m doing this.'”
Learn more about Alibi Cookies via their official website at AlibiCookies.com
Also, be sure to follow the brand on Instagram @AlibiCookies