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DODOcase Wins $100,000 Business Competition

What small business couldn't use a $100,000 infusion of cash? We'll perhaps  the startup DODOcase didn't need it, but they got it anyway this week.

DODOcase, the company, makes a case (called, of course, the DODOcase) for the wildly popular iPad. They sell it for $59.95 on their own web site. The case is hand-made and doubles as a stand for the iPad.

DODOcase just won a “Build Your Business” competition sponsored by Shopify. The competition began Jan. 1 and the rules were simple: The store with the most revenue for two consecutive months (the best two) would win $100,000.

The 1-product company was founded by Patrick Buckley, who previously founded the search applications company WebMynd, and Craig Dalton, a cofounder of mobile web startup Proteus.

Their choice of product and timing could not have been better.

Buckley cited projection of 17 million iPad sales for the first year when he told The New York Times, “we see a $680 million market for iPad cases alone. This is a huge opportunity, and we’re the quality brand in this segment of the carrying case market.”

The DODOcase is made of bamboo and other natural materials — a niche (natural materials) within a niche (cases) within a niche (iPad only).

Buckley and Dalton are clever. They hired teams of people via Craigslist to hang out with early adopters who waited in line to buy the first iPads in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco.

Worth noting that the Shopify competition was a clever idea, too, ultimately garnering the kind of publicity you can't buy, via articles in the Times and elsewhere.