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Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Centers helps local businesses obtain government contracts.

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UMKC Innovation Center
By
February 09, 2016

Innovative Entrepreneurship Inspired by a Crime

Mikey Ahdoot and Amir Atighehchi of Nutlock

No one likes being the victim of a crime and when it happens, we want to make a change.

While studying with friends, University of Southern California students Mikey Ahdoot and Amir Atighehchi had their bikes stolen. Many people would have sought revenge, but Mikey and Amir choose to make sure it never happened again.

After viewing security tapes, they identified the hex nut as the weak link so their priority was to improve the nuts. “Product development and engineering were our biggest challenges,” explains Mikey. “The process took over fifty prototypes to create a product that worked.”

Through experiments and research, Amir located Codefi’s 1st50K, a lean competition for lean startups and applied to the event. The team won the competition and relocated to Cape Girardeau to further pursue their startup.

“They’re highly professional, full of talent and everyone is eager to help,” Mikey says of their experience with Codefi. With help from engineers at their school, their Kickstarter campaign and the Codefi committee, Nutlock was launched August 2014.

As with many startups, there are challenges and tense moments. Working with overseas manufacturers and the development process created many headaches. “There’s a saying, ‘everything that can go wrong, will go wrong,’” says Mikey. “But the Kickstarter program kept us motivated.” The team’s greatest joys occurred when their funding goals were more than quadrupled and their product became a reality.

To build success, Mikey and Amir advise other entrepreneurs to study and learn from successful people. “Start with good habits to help you grow—eat well, exercise, meditate—and success with follow. Even if it’s reading one page a day, repeat that habit to build confidence and happiness.”

The Nutlock team plans to take their own advice to become better entrepreneurs and to build Nutlock and future ideas into the best they can be.

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Post provided by Kris Edens, a copywriting and blogging resource for small business. She resides in Festus, Missouri and enjoys networking, writing and the entrepreneurial community.

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