Apex Gear Company co-founders Nick Wyatt (Marine Corps) and Drew Everett (Army) have been friends since childhood. They first partnered on an e-commerce site for Nick’s family owned company Foot Medic Insoles. One day they had a great idea – a one stop marketplace for Veteran owned retailers and Veteran brands. They assumed someone else had already filled that market gap but extensive research showed they were wrong. Apex Gear Company debuted to the public on September 11th.
There are numerous books on how military strategies and philosophies can transfer to the business world. Many business executives refer to the “The Art of War”, a tome written by Chinese General Sun Tzu in the 6th century BC. In this Veteran Entrepreneur episode Nick and Drew discuss their experiences in the context of Sun Tzu’s writings.
They describe Apex Gear Company as “an Amazon for Veteran brands” and their target customers are those who are looking for unique products they won’t find in other places. The site features a very diverse set of products including apparel, tactical gear, food/beverage and beauty/health products. They focus on diversity and breadth of catalogue when selecting partners for their website. To qualify for their website partners must be Veteran owned and actively selling online. Nick and Drew also look at sales data to assure it is a product in demand. They are constantly looking for other Veteran produced products to build out their catalogue, especially those smaller companies who don’t have the expertise or budget for extensive on-line marketing.
One of their values is to be a better marketplace and create a unique sales channel for their partners. They do not charge any upfront or registration fees and simply retain a percentage of sales lower than the industry average.
TAKEAWAY: “The response and support we have received from the Veteran network has been the most humbling part of this experience.”