Local News

Skin Care Company Makes 'Beeline' To Triangle Area

Posted August 9, 2001 5:22 a.m. EDT

— One business that started small -- really small -- moved to the Triangle to grow. Burt's Bees began with a single mom selling candles at flea markets in Maine. But when the business needed a place to flourish, the buzz about Research Triangle Park brought the bees there.

Burt's Bees, renowned for its all-natural skin care products, started in a much colder climate, north of Bangor, Maine.

"I had a map in my office right against my desk, and I used to sit and look at the strategic distribution of our product line," says Roxanne Quimby, CEO of Burt's Bees. "And up there in the northeast corner, we had to come south basically to get out, where a lot of our business was on the West Coast. As I looked at the map, I saw how conveniently located Raleigh, North Carolina was to California."

Quimby and beekeeper Burt Shavitz used the leftover bee wax from their honey sales and concocted skin products like lip balm and hand salve.

Burt's Bees moved again last year into an 100,000 square-foot building in Research Triangle Park, bringing even more products into "bee-ing."

The company is constantly evolving. The candles that helped start the company went by the wayside a few years ago. The company is working on a hair gel and toothpaste that will debut in a few months.