Supplier in the Spotlight: The Capital Candy Jar

| By James Gleason

What could make your Valentine's Day even sweeter? A bit of candy, of course! The Capital Candy Jar has been creating delicious sweet treats in Washington, DC, since 2014, and is the perfect LGBTBE to satisfy your Valentine's Day sweet tooth if you're in the DMV area. 

The Capital Candy Jar In The Spotlight:

  • Name of business: The Capital Candy Jar
  • Name of founders: David Burton
  • Date founded:  April 15, 2014
  • Date certified: 2017
  • Location of business: Washington, DC
  • Number of employees: 6

1. What is The Capital Candy Jar?

We are Washington DC’s hometown candy company.  We make and sell hand-made small batch confections.

2. How did you get your concept or idea for your business?

I started my first candy company when I was 14 years old.  My parents were right out of grad school and we were pretty poor.  I asked my parents for money to do things a teenager would want to do.  They told me they didn’t have any money but they gave me a recipe to make lollipops.  I started selling lollipops at school and became the richest kid in school for 4 months until the principal shut me down because I was taking too much revenue from the vending machines.  Later in life when I was looking for a career change, I remembered how profitable candy had been when I was young and decided to see if I could make it profitable again.

3. What makes your business stand out compared to other businesses in your field?

I think it’s the breadth of our product offering.  There are a few chocolate makers in the DC but they are focused more on making the actual chocolate from scratch whereas we are more focused on making a broad range of confectionary products from marshmallows, to lollipops to chocolate covered pretzels and toffee.

4. What are your goals for your business in the next year? Next 5 years? Next 10 years?

In the short term, we want to continue to focus on growing the business.  We see a lot of room to continue to grow both our corporate and wholesale business.  As far as the long-term outlook, people often ask me when I’m going to be on the television show Shark Tank.  My answer is always when I’m wealthy enough to be a shark.  I hope that this is just one of many businesses that I am able to start.

5. How has being a Certified LGBTBE through NGLCC impacted your business?

We think there is a great opportunity to work with many of the NGLCC partners and sponsors. I know that many have set goals to do more business with LGBTQ-owned companies, so we plan to start reaching out to some of them to see what opportunities may exist for us to provide client gifts, tradeshow giveaways, or other sweet treats.

6. What advice would you give to an LGBT person starting a business?

I’m actually stealing this from Mark Cuban.  People always say that you should follow your passions when starting a business but Mark disagrees.  He said “Your passions "aren't worth a nickel, think about all those passions that you considered making a career out of or building a company around. How many were/are there? … Why were you not able to make a career or business out of any of those passions? Or, if you have been able to have some success, what was the key to the success? Was it the passion or the effort you put into your job or company?”  He says that rather than following your passion, follow your effort "Look at where you apply your time... You may or may not realize it yet, but how you use or don't use your time is going to be the best indication of where your future is going to take you."

Interested in having your LGBTBE in the spotlight? Email [email protected].