By: Kristie Robertson
Have you ever been sitting around a campfire during an awkward moment of silence and wished that you could have music playing out of your beer koozie? Yes? No? Well, Jansen White, father of two young, active sons and CEO of DUBGEAR, has. DUBGEAR designs and makes high quality portable audio products that have a unique twist in the way you use them. Transforming the face and sound of portable music, the dynamic team of audio specialists, industrial designers, electronic experts and engineers at DUBGEAR are working to bring you their first product: the DUBSTEIN.
The DUBSTEIN plays the dual role of speaker system and drink holder. In a market that is becoming saturated with low quality, poor sounding audio products, the DUBSTEIN’s speaker-base unit provides high-quality, big-bass, stereo sound to go with whatever you like to drink; the base unit can accommodate your standard beverage can, tallboy, or 11oz bottles. For everything else, the DUBSTEIN has a removable drink container for use with either hot or cold beverages that is BPA free and dishwasher safe.
The DUBSTEIN has been designed with adaptability in mind. When you are out living life, the unit’s rechargeable battery will enable you to play your favorite tunes for up to 8 hours. That’s a full workday! The DUBSTEIN features Bluetooth wireless audio allowing you to stream music from your Smartphone, MP3 player, tablet, or computer. If you happen to be sitting in your office sipping coffee from your DUBSTEIN and your smartphone rings, simply use the thumb-operated control pad to answer the call. With its built-in microphone, the DUBSTEIN can also be used as a speakerphone for a conference call. For those of us who still own audio technology from the Stone Age, the DUBSTEIN has a 3.5mm auxiliary port for a direct cable connection.
“We’re serious about sound and quality construction, but we are also a little bit cheeky and fun. We want our customers to be proud of owning our products and use them often. Our products won’t collect dust on your bookshelf!” Jansen says. DUBGEAR prides themselves on not only providing quality sound but also on producing dynamic, stylish designs.
In addition to selling the DUBSTEIN in its current design configuration, Jansen has been reaching out to various sports leagues and beverage companies to explore potential partnership opportunities. As a co-branded product, the DUBSTEIN could be customized to reflect your undying love of the teams and beverages you adore. Jansen is excited about the potential the DUBSTEIN presents and has been delighted with the feedback he has received thus far. He is quite surprised by the enthusiastic response he has received from such a broad range of people, many of whom he thought to be outside his target audience.
Recently, Jansen went to China where he visited six factories in seven days. DUBGEAR was able to secure a manufacturing partner who has since helped to simplify the original DUBSTEIN design as well as improve sound quality, reduce weight and decrease manufacturing costs.
DUBGEAR was also able to secure an equity partner who, in addition to providing a monetary investment, is contributing his time and expertise.
“The RIC Center has provided us with a ton of resources. Their onsite advisors are well networked and can connect you to pretty much any relevant resource in the market. For me, what has been particularly helpful is guidance around manufacturing, such as tooling agreements, payment terms, and insurance requirements. They are a tremendous group,” Jansen says.
Just a few days ago, Azden Audio, a leading manufacturer of quality audio products based in Japan, placed their first order for 300 units. The first of many, if all goes well. Japanese consumers are often early adopters of new technology. For DUBGEAR, this represents a great opportunity to gain global exposure. In November, DUBGEAR has meetings scheduled with Best Buy and Target in the US. Their goal is to be on store shelves by Spring 2015.
DUBGEAR is currently in the pre-production tooling phase in which they are constructing the steel molds that will make the product. This is typically a 6-8 week process.