A Short History of Livestock Of The World
In 2001, after the internet bubble had burst and web development firms were closing their doors, I started WebArtists Northwest, Inc. with the goal of providing web development for small companies. One of our first customers was Northwest Alpacas, an alpaca ranch in the Portland, OR, USA, area. Soon our company was specializing in custom-built websites for ranches, and an occasional non-ranching customer.
Our websites were built completely from scratch at first, but over time I developed a CMS template that was heavily focused on the specific needs that ranchers have.
At first we tried to work with several hosting companies, but they all lacked an environment that would allow us to develop custom-built websites with the sophistication that we required. Luckily Internet Host - a small Portland hosting company owned by Brett Van Buskirk - had a solution. His environment had everything we needed with outstanding technical support. Over time the two companies worked together in many ways.
In 2014, in response to a clear need for a B2B livestock classifieds site that catered to multiple livestock industries we created the initial website - LivestockOfAmerica.com. It was a good prototype with basic functionality. Over time we added and removed features in response to user input and got the word out with the occasional Facebook post and mass email.
In addition, we put effort into developing LivestockOfCanada.com, LivestockOfTheWorld.com, and event Registration. We also tied the ranch website template in with the Livestock Of The World database, to reduce the amount of redundant data entry for users.
The goal for the LOTW websites was primarily to explore potential customer interest and define the benefits that fit their marketing needs. Development of LOTW seriously took a backseat to web development for our customers...but we kept picking away at LOTW because we saw that the need for custom-built ranch websites was going away, and the Livestock Of The World eCosystem had great potential.
Since December 2017
In December 2017, I had started pivoting away from web development to a focus on the online marketplaces when Brett Van Buskirk, our hosting partner, died of cancer. As a result his company was shut down and the hosting for our websites and our customers' websites went away.
Since then I have learned a lot.
After much research I decided to Implement Microsoft Azure cloud-based hosting which looked to be the best combination of functionality and price. Plus cloud-based hosting is going to become vital to the hosting of future Livestock Of The World websites in Europe, Africa, etc.
I started programming in elementary school. I have programmed in a slew of languages such as C++, ASP, COBOL, and Pascal. I was a manufacturing engineer for Intel. I have built from scratch and networked together many systems. It couldn't be too hard to figure out the ins and outs of the Azure application environment, right? Boy was I wrong!
Today, many months later, I can consider myself an entry-level system administrator. I have setup an Azure Cloud-Based Virtual Machine that is hosting the Livestock Of The World websites. The sites are setup with a combination of wildcard and multi-site SSL secure certificates. 13-months ago I didn't know what most of that was, so I feel pretty good about how far I have come!
Also, in that time I have made some wonderful contacts with SOREDI (Southern Oregon Regional Economic Development, Inc.), OEN (Oregon Entrepreneurs Network), The Southern Oregon Angel Investors Network, Oregon State University Advantage, The SOU SBDC ( Southern Oregon University Small Business Development Center ), Cascade Angels, and Bay Angels. I have also be lucky to meet with a number of potential investors. I have also been blessed to have the support of family, friends, and a number of small investors.
LivestockOfAmerica.com, LivestockOfCanada.com, and LivestockOfTheWorld.com are all live again and need final testing and a few errors fixed. They also need to be reworked a bit to present a seamless experience for users as they go back and forth between the different websites.
While the sites are live, they have not received enough advertising to consider them launched.
We currently have 2453 active members.
Plans for the Future
I am now focused on connecting with potential investors. We will not be able to properly launch Livestock Of The World without funding.
I will be updating our pitch decks, business plan, and financials and sharing them where appropriate (Crunchbase, Gust, etc.)
I will also be participating in the Newchip Accelerator starting May,1.
I am very excited about Livestock Of The World and its potential to help ranches.
Please let me know if you have any questions about Livestock Of The World, Inc. and if there is anything specific that you would like to learn more about.
President & CEO
Livestock Of The World, Inc.