Today we’d like to introduce you to Larry Zahn.
Hi Larry, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start maybe you can share some of your backstories with our readers?
I have been a die-hard skateboarder and extreme sports fan since I was 10. I never played traditional sports because my mom told me that tackle football was too dangerous. Being a single mother, I think what that actually translated to was that she could not afford organized sports programs. She actually did me a favor because I became more engrossed with extreme sports like BMX and skateboarding. While I was at the height of my skateboarding, at the age of 15, I started working at a well-known retail store called Van’s California Daze. I built skateboards, sold clothes and shoes, helped with ordering, and eventually became assistant manager at a later age. Circa 1985 we received a ton of new clothing from a brand called Stussy. For whatever reason, I was just so enamored with the branding, look and feel, designs, and quality of the clothing. At my current age, brands have come and gone or changed dramatically, but my love for the clothing and extreme sports industry has not changed… other than I’m getting older and don’t have much business being on a skateboard anymore. However, I always want to remain in this scene and somehow be involved. In October of 2019, I decided I was going to marry the things I love together with a clothing brand that revolves around extreme sports. I did the research, invested some money, learned coding and web design, learned graphic design, and completely built my store and products on my own. It’s a sustainable business regardless of sales because it’s not my primary source of income and I built it to stand the test of time to make it a household brand. As of now, TIG3R12 is gaining momentum and the future is bright. Largely due to our desire to give back to the community and sponsor young athletes who need support.
Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
There are a lot of closet naysayers, who don’t necessarily tell me to give up but also kind of have the attitude of “when are you going to give up on this thing?” That attitude and challenge only just fuels my tenacity more to make it. I’m well aware of how competitive this market is and the chances of becoming a large brand and financially successful, but that’s only a small part of the dream. Like I said, my business can last long term regardless of sales and if it only stays local or small, I’m okay with that. If I can have enough sales to stay even after sponsoring kids and participating in local philanthropic events then I’m a winner. I’m not gonna lie, the thought of becoming a well-known brand would be amazing, but I’ve often told people that the day I walk down the street and see someone in a TIG3R12 shirt I didn’t give them, I will know I’ve made it. Also, by the way, my mom (80) is my greatest supporter and has a shirt on in support of me every time I see her. As long as she is proud, I know I’m doing something right.
So, I guess the bottom line is that I wish that more people would rally behind me and support the endeavor. Not for me, but for what we represent and the endless possibilities for the support of the Phoenix community.
Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
Ironically enough, my primary source of income has been in the fortune 100 corporate world as a Director of Corporate Security. I’ve been in the professional security and investigations field for approximately 30 years. I’ve also owned a private investigations firm for 20 years now. Right now, I’m also studying to get my AZ real estate license. I’ve always been a hustler and don’t do well being idle. Always have to be doing something.
I’m fortunate that my corporate experience translated to my healthy respect and understanding of being fiscally responsible, providing a quality product, delivering signature customer service, and staying relevant through innovation. That experience and skill sets are well revered and have always helped me to excel in any endeavor.
Is there a quality that you most attribute to your success?
I believe integrity is most important to success because it is such an all-encompassing word to me…honesty, quality, fairness, etc.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: http://www.tig3r12.com
- Instagram: tig3r12
- Facebook: tig3r12
- Twitter: @R12Tig3