Heavy interviewed founder Carey Hyde who came up with the idea and his partner, George Conway. They told us about the product and debut on the reality show. Here’s what we learned.
1. It Transforms Your Pick-Up Truck Into an SUV
The set comes with seat frames, installation hardware, harnesses, seats, seat covers and instructions, so you can set it up yourself. The video at the beginning of this article will show you how to install them.
The accessory weighs 65 pounds and works in any truck, except the Honda Ridgeline and Ford Sporttrac.
This is because of their under-floor storage compartments don’t allow for it.
2. Two Men are Behind the Company
Hyde runs the operational side of the company, having had nine years’ experience as a medical sales representative and another seven years as a sales manager.
Conway manages their sales and promotion, and was the one who appeared on Shark Tank.
3. George Felt Like ‘Bait in a Fish Tank’ on the Show
When asked what he felt like in the faces of the sharks, Conway said:
Before the main doors opened up, I was horrified that I was going to freeze up and not say a word. As I entered the tank, I saw all of the sharks staring at me. I felt like a piece of bait in a fish tank.
He also said that all of the sharks were smiling, except Mr. Wonderful (Kevin O’Leary). “He had this look on him that made me laugh to myself. He looked like my ex-father-in-law. Once I realized that they were only human, I felt a great relief,” he said.
4. It Was Safety Tested
Making the first prototype took eight weeks since Hyde had to order special parts and have them welded and fabricated.
When asked about the safety of the seats, Hyde answered:
The BedRyder was independently tested by an automotive forensic specialty company in Atlanta to ensure that it would meet/exceed the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards for passenger seating.
5. They Auditioned in Atlanta in January of ’14
Hyde remembers waiting on line with what seemed to him like thousands of contestants. The day happened to be a rainy one, and many of the potential contestants left due to the weather conditions.
When he finally made it inside, he pitched to the show’s producer. “She asked a few questions and stood up and said she heard enough. Her exact words were that she loved it and we would hear back from her on Monday,” he recounted.
Also on this episode: