This past semester I have been taking a course in entrepreneurship at the city college and tonight I give my final presentation. The main task we have been working on all semester has been to pick a business idea and turn it into a viable business plan. The presentation is supposed to mimic what we would tell investors or lenders.
Starting the class I had a whole list of ideas. The ideas ranged from importing custom suits from China to launching a video surveillance forum to manufacturing a modified recumbent bicycle. Each idea was sparked by conversations I’ve had in the past with family and friends, so in essence each business plan already had a partner in place.
The idea I ultimately chose to nurture was a vehicle designed by a good friend of mine, David Parrott. David is an industrial designer with a pretty killer track record. He has worked for some very respectable companies and is sort of a Dr. Frankenstein if you will. Not only does he come up with some brilliant ideas, but he’s the type to really dive into an idea and make it a reality. His resume says, “fabrication in ALL materials,” and he really means it.
The proposed business is manufacturing velomobiles. A velomobile is a combination of a recumbent bicycle, an aerodynamic shell (fairing), and a motor. The idea is not completely new, as they are gaining popularity in Europe, but it is something that isn’t hugely popular in the US…yet.
David’s design can be seen by visiting his site and viewing the ‘Capstone’ project in his portfolio.
David is currently taking graduate courses and working on his design for his thesis, so the timeline for this project is a little ways out. In the meantime, we will be working on refining the business plan and plan to field test his designs in March by riding from Portland, Oregon to San Francisco.
So look out for us on the road and for velomobiles in your neigborhood!