Ever tried to slice through a tire? It’s tougher than you think. That’s the surprising challenge my sister and I faced when we first embarked on our mission to transform discarded tires into fashionable, eco-friendly shoes. We called our idea “Wheelies”.
Our journey began with a 30-second pitch video for a local Shark Tank competition. We were just two high school kids with a vision to combat the growing environmental crisis caused by non-biodegradable tires in landfills. Our pitch? To repurpose these tires into luxury footwear.
Little did we know, this high school pitch would be the start of a sustainable revolution. From failed attempts at cutting tires to winning the Shark Tank competition and receiving funds to bring our idea to life, our journey has been nothing short of a roller coaster ride.
In this post, I’ll share the origin story of Wheelies, our journey from a high school pitch to a sustainable revolution. So, buckle up and enjoy the ride!
The Birth of Wheelies
The inception of Wheelies was as unexpected as it was exciting. My sister and I were just ordinary high school students, but we shared a common concern about the growing environmental crisis. We noticed the increasing number of non-biodegradable tires in landfills and the toxins they released into the atmosphere.
One day, we had a lightbulb moment. What if we could repurpose these discarded tires into something useful and fashionable? That’s when the idea of Wheelies was born – a vision to transform these tires into luxury footwear.
We knew it was a long shot. After all, we were just two kids with a big dream. But we were determined to make a difference. We decided to pitch our idea at the Holliston Shark Tank Competition, run by a group known as Team Eric.
Little did we know, this was just the beginning of an incredible journey. A journey that would take us from a simple high school pitch to a sustainable revolution.
The Vision Behind Wheelies
The vision behind Wheelies was born out of a deep concern for our environment. We were alarmed by the growing number of non-biodegradable tires ending up in landfills, releasing harmful toxins into the atmosphere. We knew we had to do something.
Our vision was simple yet ambitious: to combat this environmental crisis by repurposing these discarded tires into something useful and stylish. We wanted to create a product that not only looked good but also did good for our planet. That’s how the idea of Wheelies came to life – a luxury footwear brand with a mission to lower the number of landfill tires.
But our vision didn’t stop there. We also wanted to raise awareness about this pressing issue. We aimed to use our social media platforms to educate people about the harm caused by tire pollution and inspire them to join us in our mission.
In essence, the vision behind Wheelies was not just about creating a sustainable product, but also about sparking a sustainable revolution. A revolution that would make people rethink their choices and their impact on the environment.
The Holliston Shark Tank Competition
The Holliston Shark Tank Competition was our first big break. It was a local event run by a group known as Team Eric. My sister and I decided to enter, armed with nothing but our 30-second pitch video and a dream to make a difference.
Our pitch was simple: “[Wheelies] plans to reuse these tires into fashionable, eco-friendly shoes, marketed as a luxury brand”. We were just two high school students with a vision to combat the environmental crisis caused by non-biodegradable tires.
The competition was tough. We were up against some of the brightest minds in our school. But we believed in our idea and we knew we had to give it our best shot.
To our surprise and delight, we won! Team Eric awarded us $500 to bring our pitch to life. This win was more than just a financial boost. It was a validation of our idea and a testament to our hard work. It was the spark that ignited the Wheelies revolution.
Winning and Receiving Funds
Winning the Holliston Shark Tank Competition was a moment of pure elation. Our pitch had resonated with the judges, and we were awarded $500 to bring our vision to life. It was a moment of validation, a sign that our idea had potential and that we were on the right path.
But the win was more than just a financial boost. It was a confidence booster. It gave us the courage to believe in our idea and to pursue it with all our might. It was the spark that ignited the Wheelies revolution.
Receiving the funds was a game-changer. It allowed us to move from the idea stage to the execution stage. We could now invest in research, development, and production. We could start turning our dreams into a reality.
But more than anything, winning the competition and receiving the funds was a testament to the power of a simple idea. It showed us that even a high school pitch could spark a sustainable revolution. And that’s exactly what we set out to do.
The Mission to Lower Landfill Tires
Our mission was clear from the start: to lower the number of tires in landfills. We were deeply concerned about the environmental impact of discarded tires. They were not only taking up valuable landfill space but also posing a serious threat to the environment through leachate and tire fires.
We knew we had to do something. That’s why we decided to repurpose these tires into luxury footwear. But our mission was not just about creating a sustainable product. It was about sparking a sustainable revolution.
We wanted to raise awareness about the harm caused by tire pollution and inspire others to join us in our mission. We used our social media platforms to educate people about the issue and share our journey.
Our mission was not easy. We faced numerous challenges along the way, from creating the first prototype to scaling up production. But we were determined to make a difference.
In the end, our mission to lower landfill tires was not just about creating a sustainable product. It was about creating a sustainable future. And that’s exactly what we set out to do with Wheelies.
The Team Behind Wheelies
Every great idea needs a team to bring it to life. For Wheelies, that team was my sister and me. We were just two high school students with a shared concern for the environment and a dream to make a difference. But we knew that to turn our dream into a reality, we needed more than just passion. We needed determination, resilience, and a whole lot of hard work.
Our journey was not easy. We faced numerous challenges along the way, from creating the first prototype to scaling up production. But we were determined to make a difference. We believed in our idea, and we knew we had to give it our best shot.
In this section, I’ll introduce you to the team behind Wheelies. I’ll share our stories, our roles, and our journey from a high school pitch to a sustainable revolution. So, buckle up and get ready to meet the team that’s sparking a sustainable revolution, one shoe at a time.
The CEO, Rui
As the CEO and Co-Founder of Wheelies, I’ve always had a deep passion for the environment. Being a rising junior in high school, I bring a youthful, out-of-the-box mindset to the table. My background knowledge of global pollution and climate change has been instrumental in shaping the vision of Wheelies.
I’ve always been creative and had a knack for science. These traits have been crucial in conceptualizing and developing the idea of transforming discarded tires into fashionable, eco-friendly shoes. My role involves not just overseeing the operations but also constantly innovating and finding ways to make our product better and our processes more sustainable.
But more than anything, my role as the CEO is about leading a team that shares a common vision. A vision to combat the environmental crisis and spark a sustainable revolution. And with the team we have, I’m confident that we can turn Wheelies into a well-run business that meets all the goals of our mission.
The Expert on Tires, Allen
Allen Rosario, my dad’s cousin, was our go-to expert on tires. With his extensive experience in the tire industry, he was instrumental in guiding us through the technical aspects of our project. His advice was invaluable, especially when it came to choosing the right type of tire tread for our shoes.
Allen suggested that we use passenger tire tread instead of truck tread, which we had initially used. This advice was crucial in the development of our second prototype. With his guidance, we were able to source the tread of a passenger tire from a lab in Ohio.
Allen’s expertise not only helped us improve our product but also deepened our understanding of the tire industry. His insights into the environmental impact of discarded tires further fueled our mission to lower landfill tires.
In essence, Allen was more than just our tire expert. He was a mentor, a guide, and a key member of the Wheelies team. His contribution to our journey was invaluable, and we are grateful for his support.
What was the initial idea behind Wheelies?
The initial idea behind Wheelies was to create a shoe company with the goal of repurposing used tires into shoe soles. This idea was born out of the concern for the growing amount of non-biodegradable tires in landfills, which release toxins into the atmosphere. The mission was to lower the number of landfill tires by repurposing them into fashionable, eco-friendly shoes. This mission led to the pitch in the Holliston Shark Tank Competition, which eventually won and received funds to bring the idea to life.
How did Wheelies win the Team Eric Shark Tank Competition?
To win the Team Eric Shark Tank Competition, my sister and I created a 30-second pitch video to present our idea, Wheelies. Our initial summary was, “[Wheelies] plans to reuse these tires into fashionable, eco-friendly shoes, marketed as a luxury brand”. This pitch resonated with the judges, and we were awarded $500 to bring our pitch to life.
What were the challenges faced in creating the first prototype of Wheelies?
Creating the first prototype of Wheelies was indeed a challenging process. Initially, we were unsure about where to begin. We thought that to create a shoe, we should talk to shoe people. So, we went to Cobbler Shop West in Natick seeking some answers. However, the cobbler told us he couldn’t make an entire shoe from scratch or create it from a tire. Furthermore, he didn’t know anybody who did know what we asked.
Another challenge was sourcing the tire materials for our prototype. We attempted to cut out a worn-out tire into a belt of tread ourselves, but to our dismay, we were unable to slice through the metal belts of the tire.
Despite these challenges, we remained determined. The cobbler explained to us that if we brought a shoe and the tire sole, he could glue it all on to create a shoe with the tire sole. This advice was crucial in the development of our first prototype.
What is the mission of Wheelies and how does it plan to achieve it?
The mission of Wheelies is to lower the number of landfill tires by repurposing them into fashionable, eco-friendly shoes. This mission was born out of the concern for the growing amount of non-biodegradable tires in landfills, which release toxins into the atmosphere. To achieve this mission, we embarked on a journey to create our first prototype of the shoe after winning and receiving funds from Team Eric’s Shark Tank competition. We also plan to raise awareness about this pollution problem through our social media platforms. Many people are unaware of this current tire problem, so we aim to enlighten them about the harm it’s causing and call for them to spread the word.
What are the future goals for Wheelies?
The future goals for Wheelies are quite clear and ambitious. We plan to move from creating prototypes to small-scale production. We aim to make a limited batch of around 500-2000 shoes. To do this, we will finalize what the final design will look like and find dependable sources for our materials. We are also in the process of finalizing our model with a Chinese manufacturer and starting a Kickstarter to raise funds for the first drop. In addition, we aim to continue raising awareness about the pollution problem caused by discarded tires through our social media platforms. Ultimately, our mission is to save every tire from landfills by repurposing them into eco-friendly shoes.
As we near the end of this journey, it’s time to reflect on the incredible path we’ve taken with Wheelies. From a simple idea born out of concern for the environment, to winning a local Shark Tank competition, and finally, to creating a prototype of a shoe that could potentially revolutionize the footwear industry. It’s been a wild ride, filled with challenges, triumphs, and invaluable lessons.
But this is just the beginning. With our mission to save every tire from landfills by repurposing them into eco-friendly shoes, we’re on a path to not just create a sustainable product but to spark a sustainable revolution.
So, as we wrap up this story, let’s take a moment to look back at our journey, celebrate our achievements, and look forward to the exciting future that lies ahead. The story of Wheelies is not just about a shoe, it’s about a vision for a more sustainable future. And we’re just getting started.
The Impact of Wheelies on the Environment
The impact of Wheelies on the environment is profound. By repurposing used tires into shoe soles, we’re not just creating a sustainable product, but also addressing a significant environmental issue. Discarded tires in landfills are a major concern as they are non-biodegradable and release toxins into the atmosphere.
Through Wheelies, we’re able to reduce the number of tires in landfills, thus mitigating their harmful effects on the environment. But our impact doesn’t stop there. By creating a product that’s both fashionable and eco-friendly, we’re also influencing consumer behavior. We’re showing people that they can make sustainable choices without compromising on style or quality.
Moreover, our mission to lower landfill tires has a “positive” environmental effect. It’s not just about reducing harm, but also about contributing positively to the environment.
In essence, the impact of Wheelies on the environment is multi-faceted. It’s about reducing waste, promoting sustainability, and sparking a revolution in the way we think about fashion and the environment. And this is just the beginning.