Online shipping business Box of Maine expands to new Old Town location
OLD TOWN — When Daniel Finnemore’s dad Bryan moved out of state, he soon found out his favorite foods such as whoopie pies and red hot dogs were not easily available just anywhere. Finnemore’s business “Box of Maine” is designed to help lovers of Maine like his father who want to bring a piece of the state to them wherever they are.
Box of Maine will open its new location at 695 Stillwater Ave. on Nov. 1. Based primarily online, Box of Maine lets patrons pick from over 80 Maine products from more than 40 Maine businesses — including Bixby & Co. and B&M — package them in a box, and ship them quickly to out of staters.
The new location will allow Box of Maine to expand and continue packaging boxes on site and includes a small retail space for locals to come and pack boxes themselves.
The business started in 2017 in Finnemore’s basement at his Old Town home. Finnemore, who was born and raised in Bangor, joined the UpStart Incubator program at the UpStart Center for Entrepreneurship at the University of Maine to help educate himself more on running and growing the business. Box of Maine was working out of a shared office space at the center before moving to the new location. They have hired their first full-time employee and plan to hire two more before the holiday season.
Finnemore said the best-selling items are blueberry jam from Maine’s Own Treats in Trenton, whoopie pies from Steve’s Snacks Bakery in Skowhegan and maple syrup from Hilltop Boilers Maple Syrup in Newfield. The most unique items people ship are Moxie soda and red hot dogs.
What makes the boxes so different from other types of gift boxes or gift items, said Finnemore, was that they are “unique and customizable.” You can put any mix of products you want from blueberry soap to Humpty Dumpty potato chips in the same box.
Box of Maine offers many options for its boxes from a pick-your-own 5-item box for $39.99 to a 10-item box for $64.99. They also sell specialty boxes such as the 7-item Wild Maine Blueberry and 7-item Maine Maple box. Everything is shipped for free, and Box of Maine will also ship items overseas for servicemen.
Over the course of two years, 20 percent of customers have been repeat customers with 75 percent of business coming over the holidays. Finnemore said they sold 6,000 boxes last year and are looking toward 10,000 this year.
Finnemore said the business has embraced people’s love for Maine and its local businesses and want to continue supporting them as well.
“We’re just a small Maine business supporting other small Maine businesses,” he said.