A small family business with a big family purpose.
Hello, I'm Seth Anderson. In fall of 2003, I needed to change the filter on my new furnace for the first time. They didn't have my size at our local Walmart, and our local hardware store was sold out. So I went to the dealer to buy one and $53 later, I thought there has to be a better way. That started a line of thinking that ended up with SimplyFilters.com starting in early January 2004. By August, our website was live, and the next day we had our first sale. By the end of the week, we had sold out of our life savings worth of inventory and had to shut down the website while we waited for another semi load of filters. We started making plans for me to become self employed once my then very pregnant wife Krista had our daughter. Once the insurance I had with my 'real job' paid for her pregnancy, we figured the premiums would be affordable enough with a high deductible that we could buy insurance and make a go at being self employed.
In early November 2004, Elizabeth was born. She was as cute as a button and almost as small as one too. We soon realized something was wrong, but we didn't know what. In early January, 2005, as sales of filters were slowly climbing, we learned that Elizabeth had Cystic Fibrosis. My plans of becoming self employed were instantly gone, as insurance would just be too expensive.
Prior to Elizabeth's birth, Krista was a dental hygienist. We made the decision that since she couldn't get insurance with her position, that I'd stay employed with my job as a electronics controls engineer and she would stay home to care for Elizabeth, who in her first two years spent 26 weeks in the hospital for complications multiple complications of varying degree.
Since then, she's stayed home, becoming a teacher to our kids who we've decided to home school to keep Elizabeth away from the germs at school. She's also a valuable asset at answering emails and processing orders. I've continued to work, while still dreaming of a day when the filter business is my only business. For now though, we're happy that it's provided an income that lets Krista stay home and be with Elizabeth who turns 10 in 2014, and our son Nicholas who will be 13.
And as for cystic fibrosis- We've been amazed at the progress that has been made in Elizabeth's short 10 years. We're hopeful that a cure for her strain, delta 508, will be approved in the next few years. (You can see the progress of various CF treatments here:
*The 'cure' for Elizabeth will hopefully be the VX-809 in combination with Ivacaftor under CFTR Modulation therapies.
It's About More than Just Filters...