1. Why did you decide to start your company, Underground Technology?
Well, ever since I can remember, I have had a passion for motorcycles. I believe that the Isle of Man TT was the event that captured my attention and has defined my life ever since. When I was a teenager I had an idea, an idea that I have fine-tuned since then, and now we call it the NightRage Backpack. I thought to myself: Why not make my passion into something useful to me and others? Just as in the same way you ride a motorcycle, starting your own business gives you a sense of freedom you don't usually get from a 9 to 5 (or a car), and that was my biggest motivation for starting the Underground Technology engine.
2. Would you tell us a little bit about how you came up with the idea for your NightRage backpack?
When I was a teenager I was very much into motorcycles, but I also was constantly reminded by everyone I knew about the dangers of riding, both motorcycles and bicycles. I began to think of ideas to make riding safer, both from a preventive standpoint and from a post-accident situation. It took me some time, but I finally decided on a design and electric layout for the NightRage Backpack.
3. What makes your backpacks so useful for motorcyclists and bicyclists?
Nations across the globe are becoming more environmentally conscious and adopting bicycles, one passenger electric vehicles, and even motorcycles as means of transportation to get to work and to run errands; these riders need something that allows them to carry all their personal items with them. Why not combine safety, functionality, and style into one multi-purpose product?
The NightRage backpack has integrated electro light panels which increase the visibility of the rider as far as a half a mile away, and it's also made out of a lightweight hard shell composite to help minimize any damage to the rider and personal items if an accident ever occurs. This backpack with lights also has a padded sleeve for 16-inch laptops, an extra sleeve for tablets, multiple pockets for smaller items, three zippered pockets inside, and enough room to fit a large watermelon in case you ever have to ride to the supermarket to buy one.
4. When it comes to designing a product, how do you make sure that safety is a priority, while also keeping functionality and the look of the product in mind?
I truly believe that functionality, safety, and looks always go hand in hand when designing a product. When designing a product with electro panels, safety is simply a byproduct of the design, or design is a byproduct of the safety element. (They are the same thing.) Another example might be aerodynamics; aerodynamics create sharp shapes and creases that are interesting to the viewer, and the design is both functional and aesthetically pleasing.
5. How do you hope to grow your company over the next year or so?
There are many things in the works, from our marketing and advertising campaigns to the development of new products, things that I cannot say much about. But one of our biggest milestones at Underground Technology will be the launch of our web store. We are expecting that by the end 2015 we will have it up and running, ready for our current loyal customers and welcoming new ones. One thing is for sure: this is just the beginning.