Dad and daughter frozen pudding line now in Walgreens

Abu Mubarik October 05, 2022
Lorenzo and Genesis Bencivenga. Photo credit: Walgreens

Father and daughter Lorenzo and Genesis Bencivenga are the founders of Lorenzo’s Frozen Pudding, a company they started in 2011 to generate extra income and build family wealth.

They started by making the pudding in their kitchen but have since 2013 transitioned to a shared kitchen as their products made it onto the shelves of several local Chicago retailers. Their first flavor was a traditional Southern-style banana pudding, and they would go on to develop 12 additional flavors. Eventually, they trimmed it down to three best-sellers (banana, strawberry, and pineapple), according to Walgreens News.

Before making it onto the shelves of local Chicago retailers, they sold their products out of their car on the streets of Chicago. The popularity of their products was spiked by word-of-mouth buzz, resulting in high demand which they struggled to keep up with.

Lorenzo’s ambition was to make the company attain national recognition while Genesis had a bigger dream of being on the shelves of international distribution companies. And to achieve this, they had to pause and restart the business following operational challenges like meeting demand.

“We weren’t selling on the street anymore because we were in about 50 stores between 2015 and 2017,” Genesis told Walgreens News. “We were handing out samples and doing demos and it caught fire just like it did before. But we couldn’t keep up with demand again. I knew we had a great product people wanted to buy, but we didn’t have the back-end infrastructure for manufacturing and distribution that we needed, so I had to shut it down again.”

“My father has always had an entrepreneurial spirit. He’s done things to try to create something better than what we had. We hustled hard for everything, but it was fun to be able to create stuff and go sell it, ” she added.

Through dint of hard work and perseverance, her dream came to pass when she got the news that Walgreens had agreed to sell her products. “What? I’m in Walgreens!” she said in a TikTok video. “Wal-GREENS!”

Hitting the shelves of Walgreens did not come easy for Genesis and her dad. Following the high demand for their pudding, it became clear to them that they didn’t have enough capital to continue with the business.

However, with the support of the Women’s Business Development Center (WBDC), which supports women’s and minority-owned businesses, she was able to get the necessary support to restart her business and achieve success.

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