Boise State students launch consulting firm for small businesses

Testmettle cofounders James Effarah, left, and James Case.
Testmettle cofounders James Effarah, left, and James Case. Photos provided by James Effarah

A pair of Boise State University business students — one former, one current — have launched a company to offer inexpensive marketing and other consulting services to small businesses.

James J. Effarah, 22, who graduated in May, and James Case, 23, who is expected to graduate this fall, co-founded Testmettle LLC. The company will provide problem-solving help from college students for $95 a month. Nonprofits can request help at no charge.

“The concept is actually not very revolutionary,” said Effarah, who has a full-time job as a digital marketing specialist for Kendall Auto Group in Boise. “The idea was inspired by my capstone marketing class during my last semester at Boise State. My professor, David Hunt, brought in the owner of The City Peanut Shop [in Boise] for us to do a marketing plan. We competed in groups to propose the best marketing plan and earn our grade.

“On the last day of class, the owner of The City Peanut Shop made a statement claiming his amazement at the level of professionalism that us college students had to offer.”

Students will be able to earn resume credentials, letters of recommendation and possibly scholarships. Effarah said the company at first expects to pay $100 or more each semester to a couple of participating students ranked as top performers by clients. If business grows, so will the amount of the scholarships, he said.

The company has three business clients so far, serving as a test market, Effarah said. Companies seeking help can visit or email Effarah or Case at

Effarah said he and Case launched on a $500 budget — “the business equivalent of the college ramen-noodle diet.”

David Staats: 208-377-6417, @DavidStaats

The founders

James Effarah, who majored in marketing, came to Boise State from Simi Valley, Calif.

James Case, who is majoring in accounting and finance, came from Dakota Dunes, S.D.

Effarah said a third co-founder is Stephen Griffiths, of London, England, who graduated from Plymouth University with a master’s degree in human resources. Because of his nationality, he is not listed in the limited liability corporation’s certificate of organization, Effarah said.