StarTribune.com:

As a Target executive, Joseph Mudd helped small companies pursue business opportunities with the giant retailer.

That experience triggered an “entrepreneurial itch” that inspired Mudd to start his own company, which he launched in 2008 after 13 years at Target.

“I knew once I left corporate America, I wanted to do something on my own to see if I could create and build a business,” Mudd said. “I wanted to see if I could apply it for myself.”

Mudd’s New Hope-based company, Muddco Inc., is an importer and distributor that specializes in providing environmentally friendly “green” products.

“I’d been in the incubator for quite a while,” said Mudd, who for five years led Target’s business development team, which evaluates and consults with potential small-business partners, those owned by women or minorities in particular. “It gave me the opportunity to know what buyers and strategic sourcing leaders look for and also be prepared for that entrepreneurial side.”

Logo from Muddco