Griffin Sinn knows a great opportunity when he sees one.
When Griffin saw people covering their bike seats with plastic bags, he knew there had to be an easier way to stay dry. Protecting bike seats from the rain became his mission and from this the CLOAK’d Saddle Bag was born.
Griffin launched the CLOAK’d Saddle Bag on Kickstarter to turn his idea into a reality. Griffin is currently raising money on Kickstarter with the hopes of getting his product on the market. Griffin sat down with us to share his story, including the most unexpected challenge he’s encountered when promoting CLOAK’d, why he loves travel and entrepreneurship, and where he sees himself in 10 years.
Tell us about yourself.
Hello all! My name is Griffin Sinn, and I was born, raised, and still currently reside in Bloomington, Indiana. I recently graduated from Indiana University with a Bachelors of Science in Public Affairs, focusing in Public Financial Management. When I think of myself, what truly makes me unique, is my passion for both travel and entrepreneurship.
When I was 16 I first traveled abroad, spent a month in Germany and instantly fell in love with the idea of seeing the world! Since then I have traveled internationally every year or two, with the desire to go even more often. So far, I have traveled to 11 countries and studied in 3. Some of my favorites include: Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Italy, Norway, Germany and Ireland.
I’ve always been an entrepreneur at heart and entrepreneurship plays a large role in my life. From buying wholesale goods in middle school to being an officer in an entrepreneurship club at IU, to recently inventing, patenting and designing my first product, CLOAK’D. Nothing is more exciting than knowing, as an entrepreneur, the only thing holding you back is yourself!
Tell us about the CLOAK’D Saddle Bag. How did you come up with this idea?
I was walking to class on a dreary day while rain was imminent. I noticed rows of bicycles locked outside of the library, almost all of which had grocery bags tied around their seats. I knew that if people were resorting to using plastic bags, there was product missing on the market. I then thought, if my backpack has a built-in cover, why can’t it have a saddle bag? CLOAK’D was then born!
The patent pending CLOAK’D Saddle Bag at first glance may look like an ordinary bicycle saddle bag, but it is anything but ordinary. It features a built-in seat cover that stores in a breathable pocket located on the side of the saddle bag. This means, once you take the wet seat cover off your saddle, you can store it in that breathable pocket, keeping your treasured contents dry and safe.
What has your experience been like creating a Kickstarted project? Any unexpected challenges? Advice for those looking to create one themselves?
Kickstarter, just like entrepreneurship in general, is a rollercoaster ride! The major pre-launch challenge was creating a short and compelling video that does a great job in portraying why cyclists need a CLOAK’D Saddle Bag. Post-launch, we assumed it would be relatively easy getting media explore, but that has been the biggest challenge thus far. As Kickstarter campaigns are short in duration, my advice would be to really get the word out pre-launch, including contacting the media.
What motivates you?
I don’t watch much TV, but shows like Shark Tank and The Profit really motivate, inspire and energize me. If they can do it, why can’t I? You can usually find me spending hours on my business shortly after watching one of these shows.
Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years?
In 5-10 years I see myself running my own company full time while either traveling often to Europe, or living there. One of the things that is quite fascinating to me is the work style in countries outside of the States, and it would be amazing to experience that first hand.
What’s your experience been like using about.me?
I’ve had nothing but an amazing experience using about.me! I have connected with countless individuals through about.me that I otherwise wouldn’t have connected with. Further, I’ve always been a believer that a traditional resume isn’t a good representation of personal identity and about.me is there to fill that void.
If anyone wants to learn more about me, or wants to contact me, feel free to visit my about.me page at about.me/griffinsinn.
Anna Lizaur is a Marketing Manager with about.me. She graduated from the University of Virginia. Anna is fluent in Spanish and can count to 100 in Chinese.