Thursday, July 20, 2000

Inside the modern-day Willie Wonka Factory

Well, I didn't have to be rolled out like the blueberry girl in Charlie
and The Chocolate Factory, but I did have fun getting a tour of Kozmo's
Open House at one of their facilities in Manhattan. At 305 East 45th
Street I got to place an order and then go around with one of the (dare I
say it?) Kozmo-nauts to see it get filled. What fun to walk down aisles
and see all those goodies! Maybe you can guess, I don't grocery shop very
often. So, seeing aisles full of products is exciting to me! What also
impressed me was the fact that Kozmo had so many offerings -- Smith &
Wollensky steaks, It's a Wrap wraps (new!), Boulder Blondie brownies, Sony
Music clips, Nutter Butter bites, Disposable cameras and hundreds of
magazines. Matt Heindl, (TITLE), told me that a lot of people use Kozmo to
purchase things they might be embarrassed to get in the store (ex.
pregnancy kits, condoms, corn removers). He introduced me to Bobbie Lloyd,
the owner of It's a Wrap, and we oogled at her wraps in the refrigerator,
waiting to be delivered to hungry New Yorkers. I also met James Alt (VP,
supply chain), who works from the corporate office on the layout of the
factories and more, and Stephanie Cohen Glass (director of
communications). Matthew Higgins showed me the Intelligent Conveyor belts
that help move the brightly-colored orange boxes along the tracks to the
next stops in their order-filling process. Back by the complimentary
snacks, I caught up with's Shonna Keogan and Valerie
Kristlibas, as well as Linden Alschuler & Kaplan's Dwight Williams and
Lianna Carpenito, and Kozmo's Matthew Higgins. They all knew each other
from when they worked in the Mayor's office! As I was heading back to pick
up my order, I met Michael Mazzola (manager, Spoke 190) and saw Seth
Price, of US The Hubs and Spokes are the terminology for Kozmo's
order fulfillment centers. As I picked up my order, I got a free T-shirt
and could see people coming in from off the street to tour this center.