During a California trip to celebrate their 30th wedding anniversary, Scottsdale residents Kathy and Bill Puryear decided to rent electric bicycles to tour some nearby resort towns. It was a two-wheel adventure that turned into something much bigger.
“We realized that there was nothing like this in Scottsdale, and it could be a really exciting business to pursue,” explains Bill in this post. They returned home and, six months later, opened Pedego Scottsdale, their own e-bikes store.
Kathy Puryear was among several late-blooming entrepreneurs profiled in this March 2017 Inc. Magazine article about Pedego Electric Bikes, whose products are in a category of bicycles powered by motor-assisted pedaling. Among the article’s tidbits:
• Almost all of Pedego’s dealers are in their 50s or older – a demographic that also comprises Pedego’s primary market.
• Most of these dealers are like Kathy Puryear – i.e., retired or semiretired people who are first-time business owners. Pedego’s store owners include several former teachers, military personnel and government workers.
• Pedego has a business model that supports older entrepreneurs and mitigates common skill deficiencies. For example, the company sets up individual stores’ websites and provides social media help since technology has been a challenge for some dealers.
• Pedego’s co-founders, Don DiCostanzo and Terry Sherry, are serial entrepreneurs who were in their 50s when they started the business in 2008. Their age helped them design a product that appealed to people like themselves.
DiCostanzo, the company’s CEO, says he and Sherry welcome their latest business challenge.
“I have more energy now than 20 years ago,” he tells Inc. Magazine. “We don’t think of the dealers as old because we don’t think of ourselves as old.”