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Thyme Out

SAWIB08 Winner

Company: Thyme Out, Gaithersburg, Maryland
Company Description: Founded in 2006 by chef Missy Carr, Thyme Out is a company that specializes in creating fresh, high-quality family dinners that are designed to be frozen and cooked when needed. The New York Times has singled out the company as being an industry trailblazer, and Thyme Out’s innovative approach to meal preparation has propelled the company to become a national industry leader.
Nomination Category: Product & Service Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Best New Service of the Year

Nomination Title: ‘Thyme for School’ Service Helps Moms-on-the-Go

1. Describe for the judges the nominated service, including its features and benefits (up to 500 words). Include in this section the date during the eligibility period on which the service was first introduced to the marketplace:

It’s no secret that dinnertime is a major challenge for working parents these
days -- recent research indicates that more than 70% of parents experience
stress at dinnertime. In addition, a recent survey by Restaurants &
Institutions magazine shows that 68% of Americans wait until 4 p.m. on weekdays
to decide “what’s for dinner.”

Thyme Out, an independent meal assembly store in Gaithersburg, Maryland,
understands the challenge that parents face in getting a healthy, home-cooked
dinner on the table every single night. Since opening in spring 2006, Thyme Out
has been passionate about going to creative new lengths to give customers what
they really want – convenience.

In response to the increasing demand for fast, healthy family dinners in the
Washington, D.C. area, Thyme Out recently launched a unique, time-saving service
that is getting national attention for appealing to busy moms.

In February 2008, Thyme Out launched “Thyme for School,” a dinner delivery
service that offers a contemporary twist on the meal assembly concept by
introducing a completely new channel of distribution. The service offers
parents the ultimate convenience – Thyme Out brings nutritious family dinners
right to moms waiting in the carpool line at school. The concept is simple:
Parents pick up healthy, ready-to-cook family dinners while picking their kids
up from school. Moms simply pre-select entrees off of Thyme Out’s rotating
monthly menu, and Thyme Out will deliver the meals to participating schools for
pick-up. Best of all, “Thyme for School” also serves as a school fundraiser –
the company donates 10% of all sales to each school. In addition, recognizing
the important role educators play in children’s lives and knowing how valuable
their time is, Thyme Out provides teachers with an added “educators discount”
off of their meals.

This new service was created in recognition of the growing demand for fast,
high-quality family dinner options in the D.C. area. With many working parents
having very little time to meal plan, grocery shop and prepare a home-cooked
dinner every night, the “Thyme for School” program has received a tremendous
positive response from busy moms and parents who want the one-stop convenience
of being able to pick up dinner while picking up their kids from school. Within
four months, the service generated over $15,000 in revenue, and successfully
laid the foundation for expansion. As a result, Thyme Out is currently in the
process of opening two new stores.

The New York Times called the service “the ultimate for moms-on-the-go,” and
Thyme Out recently won a number of awards in the 2008 Reader’s Choice Poll in
Washington Families magazine, including “Best Quick Dinner.” At a time when
interest in the meal assembly concept is cooling off, this service has also
played an important role in strengthening Thyme Out’s role as a regional leader.
Most importantly, Thyme Out’s customers appreciate the company’s willingness to
go the extra mile, even to the carpool line, to make their lives easier.

2. List the URLs (web addresses) of any online news stories, press releases, logos, or other documents that you would like the judges to see that support your entry. IMPORTANT: List each URL on a separate line, begin each URL with http://, and enclose each URL in square brackets. For example, [http://www.yourcompany.com/pressrelease.html]:



3. Provide a brief biography of the person or persons who lead the team that developed the nominated new service (up to 100 words):

Missy Carr is the founder of Thyme Out, a meal assembly company based in
Montgomery County, Maryland. Missy is a true “mompreneur,” one who is raising
her family and running a small business. She is constantly dreaming up new ways
to better serve her customers, and loves being able to help thousands of other
busy parents get healthy, home-cooked meals on the table for their families.
Missy lives in Silver Spring, Md., with her husband, a Lt. Col. in the United
States Marine Corps, and their three children.