At the beginning of 2016, Brady Whitney began to develop a wooden puzzle book for his Senior Thesis Research Project at Iowa State University. After successfully grabbing an A+ for his work, Brady decided to post a few pictures on Imgur to see what others thought of this new creation. It. Went. Viral. In 24 hours, the post reached front page, 120,000 views, 7000+ upvotes, 400+ comments and people begging for a chance to buy one. It was decided then and there that a Kickstarter Campaign had to be put together.
After two months of preparation and collecting emails from various interested puzzlers, we launched our first Kickstarter Campaign, Codex Silenda: The Book of Puzzles, in August 2016 with the goal of raising $30,000; we were funded in 6 hours... Then we hit $100,000 in 3 days, and actually had to close our campaign only 1 week in after raising over $210,000 with still 3 weeks to go. After such a immensely successful round of fundraising, we set to work acquiring the necessary equipment and supplies to begin making books for all our backers. After a couple grueling years of working to fulfill the campaign, the buzz around the Codex continued to grow; the demand was heavily outweighing the supply (and our capabilities), so we knew we needed to take the next step.
In March 2020, we launched our second Kickstarter Campaign, CODEX SILENDA | REMASTERED. The purpose of the campaign was to raise enough capital to vastly increase our production capabilities by hiring more team members, relocating to a new facility, and adding new equipment. We were able to raise over $700k from over 1,400 backers.
Since the closing of the second Kickstarter campaign, we’ve relocated our business from Maquoketa, IA to Hudson, WI, purchased equipment to improve production (namely a new Kern laser), and hired 13 more full-time staff. Our short-term focus is to produce the product so we can begin fulfilling both our Kickstarter backers orders, as well as the several hundred pre-orders that we've accumulated. After that, we plan on continuing to produce the Codex while working on new product ideas (Brady’s got MANY) so we can continue to innovate products that blend the techniques of old with the technologies of today.
Meet the Team
Brady is inventor and the mastermind of the Codex. He originally came up with the idea for his senior thesis research project during his final semester at Iowa State University. Having grown up with a childhood filled with imagination, his passion for design has always been focused on the realm of Toys & Games, creating the products and ideas he always wished he had as a kid.
Him, Koda, and Hanna - the Original Trio - all live happily together in Woodbury, MN!
Hanna, Brady's better half (and Koda's mom), helps ensure everything is properly prepared and done right. Her extensive knowledge in customer service and various connections in the business world have helped the Codex operation hit the ground running. Currently she serves as the company's shipping manager.
“Office Mom”, noun. a wonderful person who greets visitors, knows all the ins and outs of a business, acts as Office Manager, all while keeping everyone in line. Yep, that’s her! Michele was the first hire of the relocation to Hudson, WI in July 2020.
Michele enjoys gardening, reading, quilt-making, and chasing her Rat Terrier, Rico, around her home on five acres of gorgeous Wisconsin farmland and woods.
Matt began with the team in July 2020 and was the second hire of the Hudson, WI relocation. He manages the company's online presence and handles customer service requests.
Matt and his wife, Rachel, live in Stillwater, MN with their two dogs, Izzo and Mikka, and are busy enjoying newlywed life. They love to stay active hiking, biking, playing sports, and fighting over the remote.
Mitchell was the first Laser Operator of the Hudson team hire in September 2020.
He enjoys cars, puzzles, and creating.
James was part of the first Hudson Assembly team hire in September 2020 and was promoted to Operations Manager in May 2021.
He describes himself as just a guy that's seen a few places and done a few things. He's an open book and open to anything new. He loves to go snowboarding.
George was part of the first Hudson Assembly team hire in September 2020.George, from Polk Co., has been around the block several times. He has a great family (wife - Cheryl and twin boys in high school). George has worked many "jobs" throughout his live but has never managed to find one that was both satisfying and fun; however, believes that he may have stumbled upon a jewel with Arcane Concepts.
Kevin was a part of the first Hudson Assembly team hire in September 2020. Kevin enjoys fishing, taking his camper up to the north woods, and the Green Bay Packers.
Matt was a part of the first Hudson Assembly team hire in September 2020. He grew up in the River Falls/Hudson area with his mom, dad, and four older sisters. Matt currently lives in Hudson with his girlfriend, Melissa, and two cats, Denzel and Bambam. In his free time, he enjoys tinkering in his garage, cruising on his motorcycle, camping, and kayaking.
Colin is one of Brady's younger brothers. He started with the company in February 2021.