Brothers turn skating passion into business
September 27, 2005
MINTURN – Allowance money can put you on a tight budget, so two young entrepreneurs are trying to give skateboarders a smooth ride for a decent price.Brothers Mason and Rylie Babcock of Minturn have started their own company, Morbid Skateboards, which sells wheel bearings. Bearings allow the wheel to rotate on the axles. The better the bearing, the smoother and faster the ride.Mason, 14, and Rylie, 12, are selling sets of eight bearings in syringe-shaped packaging with a logo they designed. They sold out their first order, 20 sets, in three weeks.
With the initial success, they say they don’t want to introduce the product too quickly. “You want to go slow and build up the suspense,” Mason said.They got the idea from their dad, Carl, who has a business associate who makes all types of bearings. The Babcock brothers buy those bearings, repackage them and sell them for a low price, all the while trying to make a profit. They wanted to sell a bearing that wouldn’t be so expensive for kids, they said. The brothers sell their bearings for $25 at skate shops – or for a $20 “street price” if you meet them at the skate park. Similar bearings cost upwards of $30.Carl Babcock saw his boys looking around for part-time jobs to make extra money, he said. Tying in their interest in skateboarding, he suggested selling the bearings, and the project is a lesson in business, he said.
I’m supervising it to make it a lesson as much as a money generator,” he said.He helped them start up, but now the kids deal with skate shops and customers. “I want them to see not just the business aspect but the money aspect of why something costs what it costs,” he said.Jay Restrepo, part-owner of the Board Room in Avon, said he’s gotten good feedback from customers about Morbid bearings.”From what we’ve heard, they’re pretty good,” he said. “People are stoked on them.”Mason said it would be great if Morbid turned into a career – that is, if he can’t be a pro skater or snowboarder. “If I can, I would like to have Morbid when I grow up,” he said. “If Morbid pans out, that would be really good. If Morbid gets huge, which would be awesome, that’d be the best thing.”
Rylie, on the other hand, has more interest in science. “I’d like to find a cure for cancer,” he said.Staff Writer Edward Stoner can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 604, or email@example.com.