Warmer weather helps business heat up for two local startups
Summertime can be so fleeting across southeast Wisconsin. That's why we try to take advantage of it as much as we can. This includes businesses as well. There are two new startups in the area banking on some nice warm weather to hopefully get sales sizzling.
Hyde Sportswear is an outdoor sporting goods firm. This area-based company manufacturers a thin life jacket called 'The Wingman." This innovative concept even won the 2016 Governor's Business Plan Contest. Co-owner Pat Hughes said he came up with this type of preserver for two reasons. He says versatility is important. When doing water sports, it's best to have a form-fitting flotation device to take up less space. Hughes also says he witnessed someone drown when doing a triathlon. So he knows firsthand how crucial life jackets really are. 700 of them have been sold so far, mainly online. They run $250 a piece. If you're interested in purchasing one, click here.
Meantime, Lake Effect Surf Shop in Shorewood has been open for a year. Jacob Bresett and his wife Alaina thought this is exactly what our area needed. Here, you can buy paddle boards, surf boards, skate boards, shorts, sandals, and all kinds of swim wear. The store's slogan is called "Wiloha." The owners say it's a way to capture the feel of both Wisconsin and Hawaii at the same time. They say they've really seen the popularity grow as well. And contrary to what you might think, the best time to actually surf on Lake Michigan is in the fall when the wind and waves really increase. To learn more about what Lake Effect Surf Shop has to offer, go to the shop's website.
Both entrepreneurs I spoke with have sound advice for others looking to do something similar. They say to do your homework, get mentors who can share similar experiences with you, and finally be able to put 20% down on your investment.