Like some of the companies like are obviously you can tell are going to be successful and others you're like this is Bound for failure his original tweet was a little strongly worded most of the things that other companies are sending you or kind of empty threats and more of like political games for us we're one of the paddles that are like at the center.

Of attention regarding that because we were one of the first ones to use thermoforming in our new batches with our new designs we've changed and let pretty much alleviated pretty much 100 of delamination issues what defines a legal paddle you know there's a lot of talk about that at what point does the sport like become too dangerous there.

Are paddles out there that are legitimately dangerous to play with regarding the technology with pickleball paddles I think there's a very common misconception what are the goals of a 25 year old founding a business in the fastest growing sport right now affordability quality donations speaking of affordability how much do you think a.

Top of the line pickleball paddle should cost so if you take a look at the prices how is vatic pro able to lower their costs compared to their competitors look I hear it all the time right Manufacturing in China and needing to bring it into the states but what happens when you have someone who can leverage the.

Relationship with China and see it as an opportunity rather than an obstacle could you imagine facing legal action at the age of 25 years old right after you just founded your business so what can we learn from a young individual who's quickly on his way to becoming a top brand in the sport how many 25 year olds can you think of that has started a.

Brand that's already profitable less than a year in while launching a product that customers are raving about Daryl Wang the founder of vatic pro responds to the tweets from the number one player reveals the big Advantage they have over competitors resolving the latest paddle issues and how the loss of someone close to him at an early age has affected his.

Outlook on life and stick around for the paddle giveaway then I'm going to announce in this video foreign hey what's going on everyone welcome to another episode of building pickleball this is the founder Series where I'm interviewing Founders and uncovering their story going over different.

Challenges setbacks and highlights and really just trying to understand who's behind that brand in that company and my guest today is Daryl Wang he is the founder of vatic pro is one of the more popular paddle brands on the market right now as far as his background he went to NYU majored in finance and Global business left with an NCAA.

All-American honors he holds the NYU swimming and Diving record and he has a background in Investment Banking and is the founder of Ed Max thanks for joining me today Daryl yeah I'm so excited to be here um thanks for having me and I'm excited for uh to talk about some of these things yeah for sure man I was like we were talking about this before.

And I just don't have I try to do my research and I couldn't find a lot on you so uh yeah this is gonna be a fun one yeah this is going to be my first one of these so there's a lot of tea to be spilled so just stay tuned hell yeah um what's important for me to know about your childhood that made you who you are.

Today yeah I think um the most important thing about my childhood is I pretty much grew up in an environment where I was encouraged to kind of push my limits um I didn't have very strict parents at all they kind of encouraged me to pursue what I was good at and in my childhood that happened to be swimming so I was encouraged to you know go out there um.

Pretty much push myself to limit like I didn't have to worry too much about school so I was able to pour a hundred percent of my time in a swimming because my parents kind of understood that um there's no point beating a dead horse you know like kids are good at what they're good at like um if you have trouble you know.

Concentrating in school or something like that there's no need to like force them to do something that they're not good at so um eventually I'm glad it worked out I swam since I was probably eight years old and managed to make it to the Collegiate level so that's pretty much like this amazing of my childhood and.

Like the philosophy that my parents had what do your parents do um yeah so my dad is currently retired but um he spent the majority of his career in the manufacturing business working with several American companies and helping them like manage Logistics um from China to the US and then my mother was an accountant is it a.

Coincidence that your dad has a manufacturing background and then you've gotten gotten into pickleball it's definitely not a coincidence like um so my dad and I worked together for vatic pro um I was kind of the one that started but the sentios retired and you know he just wanted to help me out he's been.

Kind of integral in some of that regard so I'm sure we'll get into more of that later on yeah that's awesome I feel like I mean as long as everything is good as far as like the relationship between you and your parents as far as when it comes to business it's pretty ideal to be working with someone who you already have that trust that's developed and.

Your parents aren't like trying to sabotage your business either yeah who you work with is definitely um a very big part in whether you succeed or not like having good business partners no one succeeds alone in this industry or any industry rather so I'm also very thankful that you know I get to spend time with my dad.

Um we work together very closely so it's really a blessing yeah I'm sure like later on that's gonna be something you'll definitely look back on it's such a rare thing to be able to work with your parents was your mom in all this she just stay away um no so um a few years ago my mom had actually passed away from cancer so.

Um since then it's just been me and my dad and then we kind of just went all out with this thing damn sorry to hear that man uh lost my dad in 2015. it's like a hiking accident um how do you think that has impacted the way you live your life now yeah so.

It's definitely um significantly impacted um the way that I approach my life and as well as my career so just in life you know I try to prioritize my health you know I'm very fortunate that I'm working in a in the sports industry where I have the chance to be active every day you know play Pickleball which is good for.

Us um but then professionally I think it really kind of altered my career trajectory so when I was in college you know I was going to business school NYU and like the most common route that people pursue is either some sort of investment banking Consulting you know that um.

Typical corporate route and that's where I was headed because you know um as a young Asian American I really want to make my parents proud um since they didn't have the opportunity to go to college in the US so I was really pursuing that like you know path um but I wasn't the best student didn't.

Have the best GPA so recruiting for investment banking was tough but um my junior year my mom passed away and I was thinking you know like maybe there is more to life than you know a corporate job which is something that I had experience in but like it wasn't you know the best use of all of my strengths I would say so I had a.

Like good look at myself after I graduated and then um I also wanted to be close to home so or with my dad rather and at that time that's when I founded Edie Max so um originally I was in a different industry the original the company that I have Ed Max was.

Originally focused on education Consulting um so my dad was living in China at the time and I had this business idea where I was working with International students and helping them apply it at graduate programs and undergraduate programs in the US so pretty much the whole Consulting process from like.

Picking schools um drafting materials interview prep all that stuff so pretty different than what I'm doing now but that was my first you know entrepreneurial experience and it was actually quite successful and then so that's kind of where the story changes because I had just moved to China I was doing it remotely for a.

While after I graduated and then moved from New York to China the first week I was in Shanghai was January of 2020 so um there were like Whispers of covid um no one in America knew what it was at the time so no one in China even knew this was before the Wuhan thing there were Whispers And like Chinese groups that um hey there's this disease going.

Around and then um no one knew the severity or like the full scale of this thing but my dad and I didn't want to take that risk so we hopped on a flight the next day and flew back to L.A and then um we were just waiting for it to unfold rather and then we all know what happens after that like pretty much the entire time after that.

It's just it was just covered like full-blown the whole thing and I've never been back to China since until recently were you back at China for business yeah so um we were actually there last week um for partially for business partially for family um I usually go there pretty often we.

Were visiting factories looking at the manufacturing process meeting the owners of the factory and pretty much just talking business like the usual stuff uh can't disclose too much but it's cool to be able to see how the paddles are made there's a lot of paddle Brands going around I don't think many have actually.

You know witnessed the process itself from start to finish it would probably change a lot of perspectives if the customers and the manufacturers knew exactly what was going on in there yeah I mean it's definitely no like accident why the top brands are the way they are um and you hear I've heard that quite frequently so far it's even with like.

Six zero it's like uh taking a close look at manufacturing and looking at um not only just design but manufacturing and how to like Foster those relationships what benefits would you say you have being able to have that like the dialogue being coming from a Chinese background and then also.

Um just having like connections out there yeah so I think the benefit of being uh having my dad with me him being in a manufacturing industry for so long and being a native Chinese speaker it's it's something that you can almost not even quantify because it benefits us so much so I would say the number one thing is that we don't use an agent every.

Company basically that you see I would say like over 90 percent they're all working through an agent like an Alibaba agent or an Amazon agent or someone who acts as a middleman between them and the factory because the factory owner can't speak basic English like they only know Chinese um and they're often from like in rural.

Areas so just to order products itself um you need to go through an agent and with that comes a pretty significant fee because the agents have to make a living right and then so they're charging a small percentage of each paddle um or a percentage of a percentage of each order and naturally that affects your margins so I think that's one of.

The main reasons why we're able to be the price leader in thermoform pedals and then also the new pal that we're coming out with we've always prided ourselves on kind of changing the way pickleball is perceived from a price perspective and I think that um having this experience and kind of my Chinese background plays a large role into that.

Ever since I started this thing there's been incredible amounts of support and I've yet to do a giveaway I just want to be able to say thank you to everyone who's supported me the people who have viewed the videos who have liked commented and subscribed to the channel it means a lot it helps with the YouTube algorithm it's very very helpful I'm not.

Just asking for it for vanity metrics um but yeah it makes me really excited that I can be able to give back to you guys I'm sorry I don't have like 700 of these I quit my full-time job so I'm basically broke and so what I got here is a Blair Mach 1 very graceful I will keep this wrapped so it stays in good condition because if I take this out we.

Might not ever see it again oh yeah and you get a wristband and also love this part you get the signature Julian Arnold push button it doesn't work right now because there are no batteries in it but I promise when you get it it'll work and.

If it doesn't well you bring it up to Ryan alright so looks like we have an extra butt cap for Volare Volare stickers so all you got to do is comment on the video with one thing that you learned screenshot your comment with your username in there and then DM the building pickleball Instagram account and then from there I'll select a winner.

I'll select someone by the next video and I'll probably just announce who that winner was in that video too and no this paddle is not delaminated there's definitely a shared sentiment there with a couple Founders I've talked to uh Joey B from the pickleball exchange is one of them as far as just making things like affordable he tells a.

Story about someone walking into the store and like needing to go into debt just to buy a certain paddle I won't say which one it is but just paddles are getting kind of expensive and it's all kind of like contextual based on whoever your whatever your income is but we don't want the sport to end up.

Like I think I can speak to kind of like snowboarding like for a day pass for snowboarding could be up to like a hundred dollars and then the gear itself if you want something decent it could be like 500 like the price for gear shouldn't really be the barrier to entry ideally I that's what I think.

Um yeah so I think um the notion right now is that pickleball is kind of a sport for like where the existing population was kind of like retired somewhat wealthy individuals but um if you want to see the growth that we're all forecasting for this sport it definitely has to spread into um more like lower income areas which is.

Something that like we've kind of addressed so um I've worked to you know set up a donation channel for all paddles um either that are unsellable or ones that we get back and they're all donated to um low-income urban areas so that more people can have exposure to the sport just like in any way that I can I.

Think affordability and of itself is like um kind of a big issue which is like one of the things that I ran into when I first started or when I first started playing and I thought it was an issue um I also didn't realize not I realized but like um we have this payment plan kind of thing.

You know Shopify has a firm where you can pay in installments for your pedals and it just shows that you know people are kind of loving this Sport and they want to have the best gear but everyone might not have the means to do so so it offers another option for people to kind of pay in plans so um that way they can have the best quality materials or gear.

And it's not worry too much about you know paying up front can people donate to the channel that you've created or are you just kind of doing this on your own with uh vatic paddles um I'm pretty much doing it myself with vatic paddles at the moment so I haven't had the time to expand it further which is something.

Um I really want to do I've been speaking with some people about it so hopefully that'll be in the works in the near future yeah definitely um what did the name vatic Pro come from yeah so a lot of people ask me that um it's not as complex as one might think so I when I was looking for a brand name I just wanted it's something.

That was kind of clean short and at the time I was looking for a word that started with the letter V because I thought that it would make for a cool logo so then I was looking like basically Googling words that start with V and that it caught my eye and then you also want something that you know has an open domain so you can create a website.

And go from there because those are like the first steps in starting a business and then vatic just stood out and it has a it actually has a meaning that not many people know it's an English word just means like being able to predict the future yeah I didn't I see I didn't know there was even a word before I like scheduled this interview I looked it up.

And I was like oh vatic that I didn't know that's an actual word it's sweet word how did your background in like investment baking in global business how is that affected what you're doing now yeah so my education is definitely something that uh I credit a lot of My Success towards um I think first and foremost it kind of.

Gives me the confidence that I can you know approach challenges you know based on my education from NYU where there's a lot of like collaboration there's a lot of like small projects that you're working on that you don't realize at the time but they translate very well into the real world maybe not so much of like the number stuff or like these.

Accounting classes but other than that like to be a successful business owner you kind of have to be a jack of all trades like I have to know how to do every single thing that is involved in creating a business so that also plays a little bit into my experience as an investment banker I worked with um so I worked on the ECM.

Side like helping raise capital for some smaller companies and I worked with a lot of owners of small businesses so like when you're sitting in meeting rooms like some of the companies like are obviously you can tell are going to be successful in others you're like this is Bound for failure so just being able to kind of.

See what the good companies are doing well and what others are not doing well um I think kind of subconsciously those are takeaways that I Implement into my own business um just being able to kind of combat any challenges because every day is you know you don't know what's gonna come through your inbox or like someone's gonna make.

A tweet or something like that and then just gotta go from there so I think my education and my experience like even though they were I didn't work in Investment Banking that long I think it's part of the reason why vatic has become successful you mentioned one word that stuck out was the Tweet uh of course this was probably you knew this.

Was going to come up just for thoughts on Ben John's making that tweet about the delamination claims and breaking the rules or finding like a loophole against the rules that usap sent a set yeah um I kind of understand like his frustration in a sense because he's like the number one player in the world you know and.

Um his only concern really is to perform at the highest level and if there are people you know using delaminated paddles it's uh it's a clear Advantage you know if you've ever played against one or like seen one in the wild or even watching a pro play um there is some shots that I don't think like should be possible on a.

Pickleball court um I don't think the lamination is good for the game at all um his original tweet was a little strongly worded I will say but um I know that he didn't like mean to come off as like very attacking in any regard so um there's no quarrels there I think.

Um people are looking to extract any drama from any tweet these days and especially since he's the number one player like people are going to be all over it but I think um big picture um it's something that we can all use to like make the sport a better place on that subject there's definitely little like legal tiffs going around between.

The top brands uh between each other there's like cease and desists out uh do you have any opinions or thoughts on that yeah so um the seasoned assists are kind of normal these days um when I first started the business I was kind of like you know just fresh and didn't know like.

Anything about more of the legal aspects of business well I knew but like I just I took it very seriously you know um because I once you like kind of work in this industry you realize that most of the things that other companies are sending you or kind of empty threats and more of like political games rather than actual you know cease and desist letters.

That are like they're gonna send their lawyers at you and like go to court because I don't think that makes sense for anyone especially over very trivial issues so my understanding or like what I believe is that pickleball is like a very simple sport the paddles are extremely simple like there's not too much technology in them at all and there.

Most definitely isn't anything within a paddle that you can patent or you know have something that you owe because there are specific like guidelines on the size you know what you can use on the surface Etc so um most of those are pretty uh basic things that no company can own outright and then.

I think the original one that probably um changed the brand the most was when we rebranded so a company sent us a cease and desist over our logo and at the time it was either you know we can combat This and like take a head-on or we can pivot and Rebrand and then so in my mind I was thinking like.

I'm not in love with our logo anyways um let's use it and like at that time our paddle designs were horrible because I had just I when I first designed the paddles I didn't think that it would blow up as it did so I was just like I didn't spend too much time on the design I did it myself and it people would email me and it's like why.

Is there Times New Roman going down the side so yeah and then I was like you know what that's it so I'm rebranding like I'm redesigning our paddles completely um after that I hired someone I contracted someone who has a master's degree in product design and then so he came up with what you see today on our.

Paddles and I think it's just looking back it's just one small challenge that kind of made us better you know so everything improved after that people love the way our new paddles look I'm very happy with the new logo um it has a very nice like you know fading pattern on our paddles it looks great so that's pretty much how I.

Approach um all the legal challenges like some some of them you can use as an opportunity to further your business and others you just ignore it's a good way to look at it uh whoever that company was that uh put a legal or put a lawsuit over the logo we can uh thank them and do a shout out for them because the new.

Design whoever did that new design that product design it looks great it's clean and it's distinctive when you're like on the court too yeah definitely even though like a lot of the paddles are starting to Trend towards all black and like a small logo kind of like a minimal design still yeah it looks great I can't think.

Of really any other brands that use that strong orange color yeah um I think the Orange is a great color for us um it's almost synonymous with the brand at this moment um I think it looks great on black so I'm glad that we chose that as like our original brand color and stuck with it.

Yeah it looks clean just great contrast what have been some of your biggest challenges so far with the business yeah so I mean every day there's new challenges um I would say the main recurring challenge that I face is probably um making the customers like as happy as possible because when you're running a.

Consumer-based business in America like the customer is King you know um you have to take all of their concerns very seriously and so um I pretty much I'm reading every email that gets sent to the company like we have several emails like I I'm the only one Reading and Responding to every email so if I'm the sole point of.

Contact and I like try my best to resolve every issue and like the most amicable way so that customers you know leave satisfied and want to refer us still to their friends I mean the most obvious challenge with size of that is delamination right so um I'm sure that's something that's been talked about like daily.

Um for us we're one of the paddles that are like at the center of attention regarding that because we were one of the first ones to use thermoforming that's been something that I'm focused on like on a daily basis we're speaking with the fact you're like going over Solutions um and by the way uh delamination like.

Itself the actual word or the core coming away from the surface is actually been fixed so um Chris Olsen's been um showing people that that what you see when you think of delamination is actually the surface or the honeycomb becoming brittle um near The Sweet Spot from hitting the ball so um I don't.

Think the lamination is going to be the right word moving forward but that's um the main issue that we're focused on right now so are you saying the delamination that people are associating with now which is people are saying it's the core coming apart from the surface is being misused in the actual term is really just the Honeycomb Core becoming.

Brittle yeah so um prior to our new glue fix um it was kind of a combination of the two where either Could Happen um but in our new batches with our new designs we've changed um the sheets of glue that we use to bond the surface and the honeycomb and that pretty much alleviated.

Um pretty much 100 of delamination issues so what we see now is um kind of a crushing of this of the core of the honeycomb which is something that's been around in like heated paddles for quite some time um when it's molded under like very high.

Heat um the pp that the honey or that the pickleball industry uses is not like extremely high quality um if you don't heat it up it won't ever break but under like several hours of intensive Heat this top surface layer becomes slightly brittle because for example when they're cutting a 16.

Millimeter paddle it's the pp is not cut perfectly into 16 millimeters sometimes it's like 16.1 millimeter they're 16.2 and what happens is when you compress it the top like point two millimeters becomes very brittle and then so over months of play that surface kind of begins to deteriorate and it has a sort.

Of bouncing effect which is what leads to um the ball is approaching very fast and that's only present in thermoform paddles because of the surface tension that we create so um that's what leads to the very fast ball velocity and there's several methods that we've been looking at to implement a fix I think we should have one in the.

Near future but yeah that's been one of our main focuses at the moment what's PP um PP is just the polymer the honeycomb polymer if you don't mind me asking how old are you yeah I'm 25. you're definitely the youngest guest I've had on the podcast so far what are your thoughts on that experience as far.

As being a Founder by 25 and you know you've had for I would say it's been a lot non-linear trajectory as far as your growth and popularity and your understanding of the market and not just the market but customers too yeah how's that experience been yeah so um I think I'm very uh lucky to be able to have sex like success at a young age.

Um there's a lot of reasons like the team that I have around me support from my parents um but as a young founder I don't think age necessarily correlates to you know you being able to build a business at all like sure experience helps um but I think the best experience that you can gain is actually by doing so.

Everything that I learn with regards to starting a business I've learned either through failure or just doing it myself um kind of reading on how other people do it sometimes but I think doing it really helped me get to this level um I'm kind of one of those people that like if you lecture me on how to do something like it'll just go through an.

Ear and out the other so that's kind of how I am like my parents always said that and then if I learn like if I actually have a mistake myself then like it really like sticks to the heart and then I learn from that and kind of grow from that I don't think that's how everyone approaches things um there's a lot of challenges that you.

Face as a young business owner whether it's like perception or like not having the security that you like your friends have you know all my friends are typically in very secure corporate jobs um and then so it's how you deal with like the valleys and the challenges that really kind of make you out to be.

Someone that can be successful later on yeah no doubt I mean risk is probably one of like the scariest things for some people but also the most rewarding it's like what makes being a human incredibly rewarding and like yeah I just resonated with that sentiment just having a lot of friends who are doing corporate gigs and there's nothing wrong with that is.

Especially given the context of some people's lives you know they need that kind of security if they have like a family and bills I'm just a single guy so I don't have like a lot of that stuff to be concerned about but um it it's great that at 25 you're taking that risk there's a lot of people who you know like shy away from it and.

There's also the danger of looking at other people's success and wanting to take the expedient and the quick route without putting in the work and it seems like I mean the fact that you talked about going out to the manufacturers and meeting them and understanding what it's like to be on.

Like the ground level um and be able to see the process and understanding the process is huge yeah um I don't think that most people realize like it's very easy to judge success from like um from the outside so when you're really like in the middle of building a business like people don't see the amount of work that you're doing.

So just for example like I have to manage everything in my business I'm on call like 24 7 like seven days a week I don't I haven't taken a day off since I started this company um like I know every paddle that every Pro Player uses I know like what's going on with the industry at all times I'm like always on social media seeing.

Updates um I know what's going on with the manufacturer I speak to them daily you know I know what's going on with my customers I know what the pressing issues are with my company um I know like as soon as a batch has an issue like I know as soon as I get emails so then I have to work on a fix I.

Have to do the social media I don't have a social media person everything myself I respond to all the emails I created the website by myself um set up the amazon store you know manage all the wholesale accounts it's a pretty intense grind that most people don't realize once you're kind of in it though and you're in a schedule you kind.

Of know what to do and you can become efficient but I think that's the biggest you know hurdle that people have a lot of people are encouraged to start a business which I think is great but to put in the work is another story for sure why haven't you outsourced some of these more arguably menial tasks yeah so I think.

Um I have the time like I'm willing to make the time and if you want something done well you definitely have to do it yourself um it's maybe I'm just not a very trusting person and I like doing things myself but another part of it is that I'm very capable of doing a good job on these things I think it makes a big.

Difference for example I could easily Outsource my customer service but if you're a customer and you email a company about even a small issue and the founder responds to you I think that leaves a very positive impression so just small things like that I think have all played in the success of the business and kind of what sets us apart.

From other companies you know I'm always responding to emails as fast as possible like I don't you know put them on the back burner it's just like everything is a pressing issue issue like obviously I prioritize but like some things you know you just got to do it yourself yeah I'm experiencing that myself now it's tough I totally understand what you mean like.

The trust part and also when you build something you have a specific vision for it and you want things to look and also feel a certain way like when it the way you respond isn't is essentially your brand and people associate how you respond with your brand and it like I totally agree on getting receiving an email from a Founder is.

Much more it means much more to me than if it's someone that's outsourced or just another person there's just not the same level of care but I also have now started to understand how much like time it really does take if you like count up emails and social media and all these like notifications you receive say you receive probably like.

Honestly like 500 in a day somewhere around there between messages and emails then you say they estimate to take about like two minutes each yeah I was always terrible at math so I can't give you the number but if you calculate out that's a significant amount of hours throughout the day um yeah but I do appreciate.

And I'm sure a lot of other people listening do appreciate that they know that they're talking directly to you it's not someone that's Outsourcing is disconnected from the inner workings of like the business and someone I can develop a relationship with you also make a great Point like if there's gonna be like um basically if the company like.

Knock on wood like falls apart then I would rather fall on my shoulders and just because I was too lazy to like do emails and I wanted to hire someone that led to like the demise I would much rather you know just be my responsibility it's very admirable um it's such a tough decision to make these days because I've had that talk.

With some people and they're like you should Outsource some of this it would free up a lot of time for you to think about things and to be able to like come up with ideas and I'm just like they're not going to do it the way that I do it and eventually you do have to it will take time and that person can adopt your style and all that all that stuff but.

Yeah I don't know like it to me it's just there's a certain feeling of working hard to create the outcome that you that your desired outcome yeah make the day will come very soon where I um have too much things to do where I need to delegate more um but for now I think I'm happy with.

What I'm doing yeah that's awesome um and when did when would you say it was like the month and year that vatic was vatic Pro was incepted yeah so we were um I pretty much made the logo on the website September of 2022. um which is pretty recent I'm actually a pretty like new pickleball player I.

Didn't start playing until August 2022 which is like a lot later than most people and especially most founders um but um as soon as I started playing I'm like you know something needs to change I was I went to the local shop to buy a paddle and there's like it's 230 dollars I'm like I'm good man like I wanna I wanna play but I don't want to.

Spend that much on something you know especially it was recreational time if you asked me now I'd probably buy it in a heartbeat but um yeah so after I started playing I started the business two months later um I kind of have the mentality you know I don't have a second to waste in anything that I do I always do.

Everything in a hurry like maybe to a fault but that's kind of the approach that I had when starting my business yeah I and it's funny I resonate with that too I just like to do it like quickly and fail fast you know it's a common very common entrepreneurial phrase and saying but on the topic of like growing your.

Team eventually and delegating these responsibilities what would you look for in individuals that you bring onto your team yeah so um I want individuals that kind of share my vision and my goals um which is something that I have with my dad right now and obviously that's led to a very successful partnership.

Um I think the biggest problem with hiring employees is that more often than not if you hire someone on a salary they are not going to be invested in the company to you know put their best foot forward which is something that you know I'm fine with I think I will resort to hiring people just for tasks that aren't super important you know.

I'm not going to hire someone to you know develop products for me anytime soon you know it's more of the um more of the boring tasks to put it bluntly so I'll have to think more about it um maybe like a student you know who is very eager to learn because there's so much to learn in this in this year any.

Industry especially because it's growing so rapidly there's new changes new information every day and I think that's very valuable so someone who wants to learn and who isn't afraid to you know give their opinion and um do all that stuff not afraid to give your opinion is such an important skill set to have it's so easy to get stuck in.

Like people pleasing and giving people the answer that you think that they want to hear and I'm just speaking from that from like personal experience but I think when you're an entrepreneurial when you're an entrepreneur it helps kind of break that habit you spoke about vision and goal what is the vision goal for static Pro yeah my vision my vision.

Is the same as before it's to change the pickleball industry and how we perceive receive the price quality ratio of paddles as a whole so whether it not be like our success later on but maybe five years from now people will no longer have to spend you know over a hundred dollars for the best paddle that people have to offer kind of like in tennis.

Um what that has become um it's probably going to be you know a conglomerate that takes over that mission later on but for now I think I've made a very very small dent in this industry you know which is part of my goal um I think people are very happy to be able to have this option of our paddles.

Where they don't have to spend over 150 dollars for something that performs at the like the highest level possible um that's my goal and um pretty much I'm just working towards that and seeing um how I can disrupt this industry because if you don't do anything different than like what others were already doing then there's no point.

In you know even starting a business 100 man and I admire that that is the way that you want to disrupt the industry and just cause a change because like you said before right like there's tons of communities of people who can't get into this sport or at least at a memorable experience I don't think that getting a 30 paddle.

Creates a memorable experience right yeah um and we have an opportunity for all these people who are so excited to join and just participate in this Sport and just getting started and if you're handing them this like 30 paddle that you're just like this isn't the way to go about it.

Um what excites you about pickleball right now and like where it's headed yeah so I think pickleball is exciting like all around either whether it's the professional side or even the recreational side um like there was this number that I saw this morning on the number of Courts built since last year it's like more.

Than doubled so just being having something that people can do recreationally like for example my dad um before he found pickleball he was kind of dealing with like you know didn't really know what to do with himself he was retired you know had nothing to do in this community like all his friends are abroad but since he's.

Found pigball he's found like a huge spark of joy in his life um I think a lot of people can resonate with that and share similar experiences like the people that you meet you know the experiences that you have whether it's competing or just playing at night with your friends I think that's pretty much what the future of pickleball is.

All about it's more I don't know if it will ever be at the highest competitive level like in the Olympics or anything but I think as a social recreational sport there's a huge need for something like pickleball um something that's easy to play easy to learn I think there's a huge market for that and that's where it's headed.

Um I hope that it heads towards a more competitive direction as well like obviously simultaneously like both those Avenues would be great but um that's just my perception as of right now given all that what do you think keeps the sport back yeah so I think um I don't I don't want to go too into details but I think the.

Um lack of like quality or not quality control but like the regulations kind of hold it back there is a lot of arbitrary things about like what defines a legal paddle you know there's a lot of talk about that um whether it's the pal or the ball like at what point does the sport like become.

Too dangerous you know um there are paddles out there that are legitimately dangerous to play with um like a delaminated pedal would count as one of those but like you know for example something that people imagine would be better for the sport is EVA foam but like at its core for pickleball it's not safe to play with you know like.

People don't want to have to wear safety goggles to play the sport like people just want to play um regularly and then finding a balance between like Equipment Technology and like safety is a big concern right now um I I also think there's a lot of room to grow in the Pro scene um like I watch every pickleball.

Tournament or every PPA tournament and then the fact that at a professional tour there's like not um good enough cameras for a replay system like calling your own lines it just comes off as very rudimentary um obviously I know they're working to fix it but for now I think um it kind of lowers a lot of people's.

Viewing experience in some way I know that is how it is for me I can't speak for everyone but I'm sure like if you have the quality of like replay and like NFL challenges or like NBA challenges like that would be so much more cool to watch you know pickleball at that level um so I hope that they're working towards that but for now I think that's.

Limiting the growth of the sport um everyone's still trying to figure out what works and what doesn't so um we're all trying to build a sport together but right now there's a lot of things that we can improve on the PPA this past weekend they did a lot of great things obviously with that like press conference like.

Vibe and look that's very cool to see but then when you watch the grandstand Court you're like why is the audio not work and why is the camera quality different from the championship court and I don't know if it's the lighting but yeah it looked just incredibly unprofessional and then like like you said the line calls you're like why are.

They using like a CCTV camera to like capture these black holes like if I had an iPhone it could capture this much better it doesn't make any sense to me yeah I'm like if you look at the video interviews that they had like those cameras were very clear I'm like just take the camera from the video interview after imagine move it to Center Court.

And we might be able to like catch some balls on the line you know it's just um it's a work in progress I'm sure I'm not gonna bash PPA they're like they're doing amazing things like it was on ESPN this weekend we had Jack socks so I think that's amazing amazing for the sport just kind of looking back on your own life you've gone through a lot of.

Different things you've been raised by great parents and you've talked about how you've had a great experience what regrets do you have so far yeah um my regrets probably I'm not a person with great regrets you know um I kind of I don't really look back.

And like I should have did this or I should have done that but um I wish I would have tried a little harder during University like you know really gotten out there like done more clubs or whatnot because um I think that was part of the reason that like I was almost forced to do an entrepreneurial route because I didn't.

Really apply myself in the generic sense um I think if I would have done that more I would have had more options in terms of my career like whether it be getting some like very valid corporate experience or like a large Investment Bank for several years and then transitioning to like the entrepreneurial experience and having.

That experience in a more like whole sense rather than kind of having to do entrepreneurship um because I have no other options really um but I think maybe that hunger like that desperation is what led to my success in a way um so you can look at all these failures.

With a grain of salt and like that all led me to where I am today like I knew that if this doesn't succeed my original company Ed Max like I don't really have a plan B so I'm putting forth all my effort into that and then all my effort into this pickleball thing so I know that kind of in the back of my head like failure is not really an option yeah.

When you have your back against the wall it produces something different I I don't know what the chemicals that happen within your brain but something definitely does happen you know like courage just steps up to the plate but on that topic you know there's a lot of young folks that have trouble finding their purpose in life.

Not even young uh a few years ago I had that problem I struggled with it quite a bit what advice would you give to someone who is struggling to find their passion or purpose in life yeah so um I think the best advice that I would give is to get out of your comfort zone so for example if you're doing the same things every day and never trying new.

Things like you're obviously not gonna find something that you're passionate about if you're not passionate about any of those things at the moment so the best way you can either try like one new thing a day like try a new sport you know like learn a new language um basically go out and see the world I'm a big believer in like this world.

Has a lot to offer you know I think if you can't find something that you're passionate about in this like in current Society then it's almost on you for not exploring it enough because there's something out there for all of us and everyone has talents in their own way you know everyone's good at something um it could be anything so I think.

Getting out of your comfort zone and taking the first step towards finding something is key like you're not going to find something if you don't bother to look right so I think that's something that people should take away if they're struggling with um kind of finding what they want to do yeah it's a great Point man there's a.

Lot of people watching and very few people looking yeah the way you look at the world seems I don't know if this is the right word but optimistic and you see a lot of things as opportunities um what do you fear yeah so um I kind of fear not really in a personal sense I fear not reaching my full potential you know I know what I'm.

Capable of like let's take vatic Pro as an example like I know what this company and this industry is capable of so if something like you know in my control that like gets whether it's a mistake you know I'm fearful of whether that will you know tarnish all the work that we've done um.

That's pretty much it there's not too much that I'm worried about I don't think that's a good approach um if you're scared of something um then you're obviously not going to want to try I think trying something even if failure is right in front of you I think that's a better way to do it why is that.

Why is the company failing component of your fear if you've had success with like Eddie Max and even just launching a successful Brandon like eight months ten months yeah yeah I guess really it's because it's because I kind of treat this company as like my baby like my very successful not very successful like headed in the right.

Direction you know so I think everything that we've been doing is like very calculated and we have a very um good approach so I think like just you don't want to look back in five years and be like you know we had such a good thing going on but because of XYZ it all fell apart like it could have been easily avoided um that's never.

Something that you want to run into in your business or even in your life like oh I should have did this you know um I don't think I really operate with that mindset but it is definitely the fear that keeps me you know doing things well like the fear of failure like should motivate you to like be very precise with how you operate day to day.

Who or what do you do it for honestly um I do it for everyone who's believed in the brand um something very early on that I started was the ambassador program which is one of the things that I'm very proud of we've amassed a very large number of.

Ambassadors over like pretty much every state and different continents as well and they're all people who know like are supporters of the brand you know they took time out of their day to want to apply as an ambassador and they take time out of the day to tell other people about whether it's this paddle or this brand or you know the founder I think.

Those people um are equally as invested in the company as myself so I think of them all as members of my team and all my Pro players you know they believed in me even when I didn't have a lot to offer this was in the early days I'm working pretty much for all of them you know I want them to be proud of the brand that.

They represent and I want them to like be optimistic about what we can accomplish in the future rather than like looking at it in a negative light shout out Spencer Smith I don't know all the other Pros but that are under vatic but uh I've always liked watching Spencer Smith play it's cool to see him rocking back he has some sweet like.

Apparel too I forgot what he was rocking yeah yeah with Spencer's story is probably like one of the um basically like perfect opportunities me stories that um I had um this was only like a month after I started a company like we just barely had paddles in and then I was looking.

For people to kind of you know work with us as a sponsor whatever they wanted um so I DM different Pro players on Instagram I probably DM like over 50 and then um Spencer happened to like get back to me and he wanted to have a zoom call so then um that's pretty much how it all started.

We had a pretty good chat I told him like what my vision was for this brand and then how he fit into that role and um so far everything has gone gone well you know I remember like there were Pros that I would DM I'm like can I please send you a paddle like just so you can try and they would be like no I'm like dang you know like looking how far we've.

Come from that where people didn't wanna you know even use our equipment because they had no I'm sure they get a lot of messages and whatnot uh but looking back at how far we've come till now where people are constantly asking um you know even Pro players so I think that's very good I'm very thankful that we've signed Spencer.

It was a very um he's a just a great overall guy as well as a great player like I've never heard a single bad thing about Spencer or like and he just plays you know he plays hard he's very passionate about pickleball he you can't really measure you know his impact on helping the brand grow it's kind of something that's like.

Unquantifiable because like as a pro player he kind of helped us get on the map in that scene he's a very reserved guy but like after he started playing with our paddles at least every PPA Tour player knew about vatic because they're like oh that's what Spencer is using so I think that helped us gain respect in some regard to in the Pro scene and then.

After that um like the general mass is followed yeah I appreciated about that about him is that he's low-key but he like he does his thing um that's that's awesome though man like it's it's it is nice to have that in your back pocket as like that's like a memory that I'll always have an.

Experience no grudges need to beholded and this doesn't need to be applied to the future but it's just like I can always look back on that like you can always look back on that moment and be like at one point we were here and now we're here and sometimes that's just a beautiful thing to look back on yeah definitely it's.

It's a very um good thing to have you know to see how far we've come it gives you a lot of perspective you know on how it's only been you know like eight months since I've started which is and most businesses like a very short period of time but everything you know pickleball changes very quickly so I'm very proud.

Of that it's awesome is there anything I haven't asked you about that you'd like to talk about yeah so there's actually one thing um that I want to talk about regarding like um the technology with pickleball paddles I think there's a very common misconception not misconception but like somehow it has become the industry.

Standard where all pickleball paddles last forever or like at least one year that's more of a testament to like how rudimentary like the technology was before like if you have a if you have a sheet of pp that's not altered in any regret and you slap two pieces of fiberglass graphite or carbon fiber around it like there is no reason that.

It shouldn't last right but if you look at any sport or or most Industries like the degradation of a product like how fast it degrades is directly correlated with the amount of technology that is offered within that good right for example like you're gonna if you have a Ferrari if you're going to be taking it to get service far more than if you have.

A Camry and then the especially with my background in swimming I think that was a very big thing um they're in swimming you buy Tech suits like basically just for races um and you can only wear them for about eight races before you it's like obsolete you know it won't do you any.

Good because of like the water resistance and how that works um and those things are 500 you know so you buy something in that industry like 500 use it for like one or two meets and then you're tossing it um so it's just all about perspective and I think um people will slowly start to see how.

That um correlates to the pickleball industry like um yes we're working as hard as possible to like make our Pals last as long as possible but when you introduce a very new like manufacturing tactic that involves very high heat and extremely high surface tension like I don't think it's.

Reasonable to assume that it will last you know a year or whatnot I think um three to six months is optimal like or ideal based on how we manufacture them um but yeah so that's the way that the industry is changing and I think um I'm hoping you know more people will start to see that as more Technologies.

Are introduced into the industry very interesting so you're saying that the half-life of one of some of these like newer paddles is more like three to six months yeah so I think that because for example like think of our paddles as almost like you know at the highest level like a tournament paddle you know like you bust.

It out for a tournament if you want to perform at the highest level like obviously you want to practice with what you're using in a tournament um but so yeah that's kind of the way that I see it um I know that doesn't mean we're not working to fix it you know I'm working day and night to try to implement new.

Core changes and um like different processes that don't damage the core as much um but that's basically the gist of it yeah the half-life what would change or extend that duration yeah so there are several options um one option is that you can use a smaller diameter honeycomb so like right.

Now each honeycomb is eight millimeters in diameter and then um these are like the little octagon cells that you see on the on the PPE and then you could use uh for example a six millimeter diameter honeycomb it's just like the smaller units will provide more um sturdiness and then under high heat so it won't it is less likely to break.

Down but there's downsides to that um there's like it adds weight that's the problem it adds a few grams of weight so we're implementing changes with that like I'm getting samples all the time that try to fix these issues like on a regular basis another um fix that is possible is um having more precise PP like the factory.

Needs to we're working with them to Source like more precisely cut PP so like I mentioned earlier if it's like 16.1 or 16.2 millimeters and thickness the top portion will kind of is more likely to be crumbled and those pedals might break down faster so we're trying to increase the quality of the pp and so ensure that most of them are cut at 16.

Millimeters exactly and there's very little give at the top um I think that plays a large role into the cores breaking very interesting um this probably ties into what you're just mentioning but what can people expect next from vatic Pro I think you had mentioned earlier that there's like a new paddle that's going to be coming.

Out too yeah so we have two new series of paddles coming um though I'm gonna be launching one probably at the end of this week that's gonna be the first one coming is Spencer's battle so um this is his signature paddle like it's pretty much something that's never been.

Seen in the in the industry not never been seen but it's very unique especially in thermal form paddles it's like the only thermoform pedal like as it is um and then after that we're releasing another series of more affordable paddles are there going to be under a hundred dollars and they're gonna have.

Foam injected walls so um a foam paddle with uh under a hundred dollars is unheard of right now so that's going to be something that people really love in our existing two shapes so if like you're very concerned about delamination and you hit very hard and you don't need that extra power with thermoforming and your paddles are.

Breaking down quicker than you might like and I think that there's a huge marker for people who want to just use a foam foam injected wall paddle with the raw carbon fiber surface there's a huge market for that and I think um I'm very looking forward to that launch it should be launching in like a few weeks and then it's going to be you've sent.

Straight to Amazon damn that's awesome um why Amazon yeah so um Amazon just because of the quantities um we're going to be setting them in pretty large quantities and then um because I have to we pack all our orders here you know so at a certain point it's difficult to pack so many.

Paddles each day and deliver them to the post office and whatnot um it's just for Logistics and then people love shopping on Amazon like I'm one of those people that before I I would much rather buy anything on Amazon way before I even go on someone's website you know I just type in like carbon fiber pickleball paddle like I'm.

Not gonna do research on like all the best brands or when I just buy it on Amazon so um it will be on our website as well I think um a little bit afterwards just to gauge the markets and then we'll go from there oh yeah looking forward to that looking forward to that uh Spencer's paddle especially that's going to be.

Badass and then these uh phone paddles too super cool um also cool that you're breaking your way into that price point given the type of product that you're going to be delivering um yeah man I appreciate your time I'm so grateful that you're willing to talk on behalf of your branding company.

And giving me the opportunity to do this as one of your first interviews where can people find more information about you and if you have any other shout outs yeah so um if you want to reach me you can email me or just go on our website the email at the bottom or DM me on Instagram those are the best way to reach me I usually respond very quickly.

If you want to get in touch about anything whether it's like sponsorships questions about paddles um I just want to probably give a shout out to my pro team like thanks for sticking with me a lot of um they've been integral and you know building the brand image into what it is now and I also want to say thanks to you man for.

Inviting me on this podcast I want to give you a congrats on you know the views that you've been getting lately it's been awesome to see and uh hopefully more to come and hopefully this does well in views as well I'll do everything I can to make sure this thing pops off man all right yeah thanks so much it's been a great experience and.

I'm definitely looking to do more interviews after this it would be awesome yeah hopefully we can do a follow-up uh once like the new releases come out yeah that sounds awesome thanks Brian appreciate it man
Vatic Pro founder Daryl Wang joins me for his first podcast and interview appearance. Join us as we delve into the captivating story of Vatic Pro, a rising star in the Pickleball industry. Responding to his tweet from Ben Johns, thermoforming, and delamination misconceptions. From his humble beginnings to becoming a renowned brand, this video covers his unique upbringing, challenges faced along the way, and their vision for the future of Pickleball. Hear firsthand about his experiences as a young business owner, learn valuable advice for the younger generation, and discover the truth behind paddle misconceptions. Don’t miss out on this inspiring tale that will leave you motivated and excited for what’s to come!

Chapters:
00:00 Intro
02:10 Beginning
03:22 Upbringing and background
16:04 Vatic Pro, the name
18:32 Tweet from Ben Johns, legal
23:44 Challenges: delamination
27:32 Experience as a young business owner
35:32 Inception of Vatic Pro, company outlook
40:17 Future of pickleball
41:31 Last PPA event
44:53 Personal regrets, advice for younger generation, fear
54:16 Paddle misconception
58:42 What’s next
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