Think eighth grade is too young to launch a startup? Think again.
Freddy Bunkers was an eighth-grader when he started his entrepreneurial career and is now on track to becoming a seven-figure business. He was an always-on-the-go athlete, acne-prone just like every other adolescent, and in search of finding the best solution to feel and stay hygienic when locker rooms and resources weren’t immediately available.
After developing the HyperGo After Sport Wipe— a wipe that claims to clean and leave you feeling refreshed– Bunkers expanded to a much larger clientele – from student-athletes, outdoor adventurists, or for those day-to-day activities. We sat down with Bunkers to discuss how HyperGo came about and is now on track to becoming a seven-figure business.
Grit Daily: You had your own adventures in business before the age of 20. Share those.
Freddy Bunkers: Within my career as an entrepreneur thus far, I have had many different types of businesses. From selling pork to designing websites for clients, I have worked in a variety of industries, and it’s been quite an adventure. When I was nine years old, I was in the 4-H and would participate in the Alameda County Fair, which led me to my first business, Freddy’s Meat Delivery. I would sell bacon, pork chops, and variable meats to friends, family, neighbors, etc. The allure was farm fresh, with no pesticides, or growth hormones, so it was healthy and delicious. I even used to make personalized receipts for the customers, which was always a nice touch.
I also always loved technology and thus far spent hours looking up the coolest, new gadgets in tech. This led to me creating websites for my Mom’s business, my Boy Scout troop, and more. I have always had an eye for design, and this went hand and hand with the web design that I created.
One of my favorite positions was being the Social Media Coordinator for the Figure 8 Voyage of Randall Reeves. The Figure 8 Voyage was the first-ever attempt to circumnavigate America and Antarctica in one year, solo. While he was traveling, I often communicated with him via email, and he would send me daily blogs, vlogs, photos, and videos to edit and then post to his site to help keep people updated on his journey. It was an amazing experience, and I learned so much – truly inspiring!
Grit Daily: What’s behind the Hypergo name?
Freddy Bunkers: From the beginning, our entire premise for the product was for active athletes. Over the years, we have realized our wipes are a perfect addition to any lifestyle, but when we were brainstorming about the name, we needed it to feel active. We began writing down adjectives that resembled an active lifestyle: hyper, go, fast, to name a few. After what seemed like hours upon hours of wordsmithing, we finally landed on the name HyperGo.
Grit Daily: For the uninitiated, what’s special about Hypergo?
Freddy Bunkers: We are one of the largest full-body wipes on the market. Within just one-foot by one-foot sized wipe, you can efficiently and effectively wipe down your entire body. We like to call it a square foot of clean. Because the product is so small, you can store wipes just about anywhere: in your purse, glove box, backpack, desk, or tent.
We also pride ourselves on our unique trademarked blend of natural ingredients, including oatmeal, aloe, honey, and more. Being a wipe for active lifestyles, it would be pretty ironic if the product was bad for your skin and the earth, so all of our ingredients collectively moisturize and clean your skin at the same time. HyperGo leaves your skin feeling better than before your sweat.
Additionally, our wipes are also biodegradable, so it’s the perfect product for camping. Our packaging is also recyclable. Being environmentally friendly is a huge part of our company ethos, so we worked hard to create a product that’s good for people and the earth.
Grab a wipe and find your next adventure!
Grit Daily: What are some important quality aspects to consider when developing these types of products?
Freddy Bunkers: The biggest question you should be asking yourself is, “Do you have a market?” When doing this, ask people outside of your comfort zone if they would use your product (not your friends or family). If the product isn’t well-received or you immediately receive negative feedback, it’s important to note that the product might need improvement or even worse, might not sell considering it lacks a market.
When it comes to the actual product, testing is the best strategy. When developing HyperGo, I tested hundreds and hundreds of wipes from different factories, countries, etc. Your product is not going to be perfect after the prototype. Like asking about market size, you need someone outside your circle to test your product. They need to find the flaws and give criticism so that you can perfect the product for the market.
Grit Daily: What is one conventional wisdom about young entrepreneurs that is just plain wrong?
Freddy Bunkers: That we know everything or that the old ways of doing things are always outdated. I can be guilty of this, but I have learned you always need to be open to suggestions. You do not have to take it, but listen, you never know when you’re going to hear something important that could change how you do business.