“North Fulton Business Radio,” Episode 168: Melanie and Sebastian Flores, OctoGifts
On this edition of “North Fulton Business Radio,” host John Ray welcomes the show’s youngest guest to date, budding entrepreneur Sebastian Flores, age 13, who along with his mom Melanie are co-founders of OctoGifts. “North Fulton Business Radio” is broadcast from inside Renasant Bank in Alpharetta.
Melanie and Sebastian Flores, OctoGifts
OctoGifts celebrate love, friendship, and your inner child by offering candy dispensers and greeting cards that are fun to give and fun to keep. OctoGifts is the brainstorm of 13-year-old co-founder Sebastian Flores. At age 11, he decided to make a combination candy dispenser greeting card for a friend who loved sweets. With no luck in searching for how-to videos on YouTube, Sebastian realized he’d have to figure it out himself. After hours of experimenting, he had built a working machine out of items that he salvaged from the recycling bin, as well as his art supply stash. In January of 2019, he revisited this idea and redesigned his card in the shape of a heart for Valentine’s Day. His greeting cards sold out within hours on Etsy, and Sebastian knew that he was on to something. He pitched his creation at the 2019 Alpharetta Business Expo; served as an entrepreneurship panelist at the 2019 MantisEdu UNCF STEM summer camp at Clark Atlanta University; made the 2019 Atlanta Business Chronicle’s 25 under 25 list; and has been featured in numerous publications including the Alpharetta-Roswell Herald and the Forsyth County News. Sebastian lives in Alpharetta with his parents and older brother. He plans to become a mechanical engineer. His mother, Melanie, an OctoGifts co-founder, has a chemical engineering degree and formerly led a STEM coaching team that served early childhood educators.