We interviewed owner Rick Pescovitz who said they’ve sold 40,000 pods since starting the company. When asked about his future plans, he said, “We will continue to grow the Under The Weather brand. We are unveiling new products in the coming days, and have more in the works. We have a great fan base, and they have been very instrumental in our success, and they also are the reason we have so much fun!”
Here’s what else he told us about…
How the Idea Came About
I was at Amy son’s soccer tournament in Richmond, Virginia, several years ago. It was 8 am, 33 degrees, pouring rain, and biting winds. The teams were set to kick off, and I was standing there, not dressed at all for the conditions. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw the Pot-o-let. It took me a half a second to make the decision. I sprinted towards it. Now, keep in mind, typically, I don’t even go into one of those things to pee. This day was different. I’d had enough of these nasty weather conditions. I went inside, put a piece of cardboard over the toilet, and sat down. All of a sudden, I was no longer getting soaked, and I was much warmer. But I couldn’t watch the game through the dingy green walls. That’s when the lightbulb went off! There had to be some kind of shelter that would block the wind and rain, yet still allow you to watch the game. I realized there was nothing in the marketplace.
Designing the Product
During the nine-hour drive home, I went through a million images in my mind. Frankly, the port-o-potty kept popping up. Before we arrived home at 2 am, I had determined the shape of my pod would be similar to the Port-o-potty. However, it had to be waterproof, lightweight and easy to carry. Most importantly, it had to be opaque to you could have a clear view of the game. The clear part was easy to tackle, as well as its ability to be water and windproof. The hard part was making it portable and very easy to assemble. In fact, it was important that there was little to no assembly required. The next morning, I went to the laundry room to throw in two loads of tournament-soaked clothing. I opened the cabinet in the laundry room, and out popped the laundry basket. It had been crammed in the closet, and used this opportunity to jump out, and pop right up. That was it. It matched what I needed, with literally no assembly necessary. Now I knew how the product would work. I just had to make one. I researched and made contact with a half dozen tent manufacturers. Approximately 6 weeks after the idea came to me, I had my FIRST (of many) physical samples.
Pros & Cons to Working With His Spouse
The best part is that we are on the same team always! We want the same outcome. And, we trust each other completely. Another benefit is that we have completely different strengths. Mine is product design and sourcing, Kelly is a marketing genius! The con would definitely be that we are consumed in the business 24/7. Our youngest daughter, Anna, who is 17, says that’s all we talk about. Sometimes, I think she’s right. Especially, as we’ve been down this long road with Shark Tank.
Appearance on ‘Shark Tank’ & Advice for Future Contestants
We were contacted by Shark Tank more than two years ago. They asked us to fill out an app and send a video. We did. It was the most boring video you could imagine. We never hear another word. I waited exactly one year to the day, and went outside to film a 10-second clip of me folding the pod with no shirt on in a snow storm. My phone rang three minutes later. They wanted me to create a new six-minute video…
Be very creative with your audition video. This is TV, it’s about entertainment. You may have the best business or the most innovative product in the world, but if you video is boring, you have no shot to get in the Tank. Throw away all your inhibitions and leave it all out there. My kids cringed when I told them all the crazy stuff I did for our audition video. I had fun!