Design a retail extension for Kodiak Cakes.

reframing The OBJECTIVE

Reimagine the “frontier experience” in modern context.

The Idea

Give urban adventurers an excuse to throw axes over brunch.

The SItuation

Kodiak Cakes is a premium pancake mix company rooted in real food traditions and made with wholesome ingredients. Their “protein-packed” mixes appeal to a health-conscious crowd leading active lifestyles. Sales gained a major boost in 2016 when Kodiak Cakes was featured on Shark Tank, and soon became the #1 selling pancake mix at Target.

But breakfast is in decline. Busy schedules mean that fewer people have time to enjoy their morning meal, and are looking for alternative ways to satisfy their hunger on-the-go.

How can Kodiak Cakes break away from the breakfast table?



qualitative research, SWOT analysis, four C’s, target audience development, business model canvas, trend forecasting

In order to design the best retail experience, we distilled the brand to its simplest idea:

“nourishment to help you conquer your frontier”

Key Learning

Adults are looking for new ways to indulge their inner child.

Urban professionals take pride in a work-hard/play-hard lifestyle. Signs of this trend include the resurgence of arcade bars and the steady enrollment in recreational sports leagues like kickball and softball. So we asked ourselves: what activity takes people out of their comfort zone, but also makes them feel strong?


Introducing Kodiaxes: a new axe-throwing experience by Kodiak Cakes.

“Adventure with a side of brunch.”

Roots in Warfare

Axe-throwing was once a survival skill practiced by Celts and frontiersmen. Today’s iteration has more to do with passing the time between beers than between battles. Since 2011, the trend has grown to saturate Canadian markets. Axe-throwing is expected to gain popularity in the US in the next 2-3 years. Kodiak Cakes has an opportunity to lead the charge.

Business Model

Target Audience

Urban Adventure-Seekers

KEY Activities

Axe-throwing lessons // Brunch by Kodiak Cakes // Collaborations with local breweries

Startup Costs


Floor Plan

Design Elements

Fellow Axe-perts: Anna Boutchard (Strategist), Max Farinholt (Creative Brand Manager), Emily Thomas (Creative Brand Manager)

Trivia: Axes were used by soldiers during the American Revolutionary War.