Nothin’ But…

In 2008, Jerri Graham was not happy with snack bars. The ones on the market lacked the taste, texture and ingredients she wanted to eat — or feed her family.

So the Westport woman created her own. Her “Nothin’ But” bars were a hit, at local cafes, farmers’ markets and gyms. Yet as a solo entrepreneur, she could not take advantage of their surging popularity.

Around that time, Steve Laitmon tried a bar at Doc’s — the old Saugatuck coffee shop. Impressed he stepped into the parking lot, found Graham’s number and called her.

An attorney who also owns the Calendar Group — a Westport-based staffing firm for high net worth individuals and families — Laitmon asked where Nothin’ But was sold besides Doc’s. She was in the farmers’ market, a couple of gyms and cafes, and Arogya.

Jerri Graham and Steve Laitmon.

Jerri Graham and Steve Laitmon.

Laitmon went door-to-door — literally — expanding the market. His 1st target: the Hamptons. He was successful — and so were Graham’s bars.

A few years later, Nothin’ But is now sold in a couple of thousand outlets. Costco and Whole Foods carry them, in 3 regions each. Hudson News sells them nationally. In March, they’ll be at 7/Eleven.

Last year, the company grew by 300%. Sales are in the low 7 figures.

Laitmon did it by old-fashioned pavement pounding. He also brought in a vice president of sales, a sales assistant and an operations guy. That’s it, though. Nothin’ But is nothin’ but them.

Success comes from the product itself, Laitmon says. “We’re taste-driven, with clean ingredients. Nothing artificial. No garbage.”

Right now there are 4 granola bar flavors, and 4 types of cookies. The Nothin’ But brand has plenty of potential, Laitmon notes. But they’re solidifying their current offerings, before expanding.

Nothin' But

Speaking of expansion: Nothin’ But’s offices just moved from Westport to Stratford. The company needed a loading dock — and that’s hard to find here.

Doc’s — where Laitmon made that 1st phone call to Graham — is no longer around. But Nothin’ But bars are.

Thanks to that Westport connection, they’re more popular than ever. And all over the country.

9 responses to “Nothin’ But…

  1. The much-deserved success of Nothin’ But couldn’t happen to a nicer woman. Congrats, Jerri!

  2. Jeri is a wonderful, smart and creative person and a terrific neighbor. It has been a lot of fun watching her business blossom. Her granola bars are truly the best!

  3. Elina Lublinsky

    There is Nothin’like these bars on the market. Love them!
    A well deserved success.

  4. Nice

    >

  5. So glad Jerri hooked up w/ the business smarts to get her creative smarts to the place it should be. She’s a lovely person.

  6. Laurie Goldberg

    A few years back, Jerri had a total cult following at the Westport Farmer’s Market and wherever anyone could get their hands on her delicious bars.
    They are swooningly delicious and made with integrity, creativity and attention to quality and detail. With all due respect and judos to Jerri’s business partner who is an incredibly dedicated, talented and committed, guy, TOGETHER they have taken that product national so that many more people can enjoy and experience it. This write up really seems out of balance to me and reads as though the only person responsible for success is a man, and not the founder/creative force in this company who happens to be a woman. .

  7. I found one of their bars at a coffee shop in Los Angeles last year, and it made me smile to spot this Westport connection so far from home. It is uplifting to know Jerri, a genuinely wonderful person, has teamed up with a smart and hard-working partner – their success has been earned. Shout out to Jerri’s talented daughter, too. Kudos!

  8. Mary Ann Singleton

    Lovely piece, and kudos to both Steve and Jerri, but it makes it sound like it’s all Steve, with Jerri doing a little cooking in the kitchen, and nothing could be further from the truth. This company wouldn’t exist without Jerri, neither then, nor now. It would have been lovely to have heard her voice in this piece too!

  9. Renee and I got to know Jerri when she sold her fabulous bars at our famer’s market on Sundays. Shes an inspiration to budding food entrepreneurs. Its wonderful to see her much earned success. Way to go Jerri!