Boy did Erica's invention, the Bover bag, a pack and play storage bag come in handy last week. Due to Hurricane Irene, we lost power from Sat. to Sat., and as a result, I had to bring my daughter, Savannah to visit with my parents for the week, as we had no power. Savannah enjoyed her impromptu vacation, but I was not prepared to pack up our suitcases and all Savannah's necessities for this trip. At first, I only thought we would be 1-2 days without power. But, after finding out on the second day that it would take up to a week to have power restored and downed trees and power lines fixed and removed outside my driveway, I had to head back to CT to empty out the refrigerator, which was stocked for the storm and pick up additional items for Savannah and I, including her pack and play. When I originally bought Savannah's pack and play, it came with a cheap storage bag, that was more of a hassle to get the pack and play into, than a helpful storage bag. But, thanks to Erica's Bover bag, which she sent for me to review (check back this Friday for my full review), I was able to quickly and easily pack up and store Savannah's pack and play and take along with us for our mini vacation. And, can I say, how stylish and hip these bags look! You would never know that I was toting around a pack and play.
After stumbling upon the Bover bag, I knew I needed to spotlight the inventor of this great invention. Below is my interview with Erica Reilly. Please enjoy my interview, and don't forget to check back on Friday for my Feature Friday post, where I will write more about this great product and must have for any mom on the go, as well as offer readers a 20% off coupon code, so they can pick up a Bover bag for themselves or someone they know.
Name: Erica Reilly
Company Name/Product/Service: Bover/Pack and play bags
Company Location: Media, PA
Company Website: www.boverbags.com
Facebook URL: Bover Bags (https://www.facebook.com/
Twitter Handle: @BoverBags
Age of Company: 1 year
Favorite Book: The Fountainhead
Tell us a little bit about yourself. How many children do you have? What are their ages? Your hobbies? Etc.
As a busy working parent of a two-year old boy, Erica Reilly doesn’t have a lot of time for things that don’t work well. So when she and her husband were loading up the car for another weekend at the shore, they realized there had to be a better way to carry their pack n’ play.
Erica, a former corporate communications executive in New York, decided to create a bag that would solve their storage and carrying problems. Several designs later, the Bover was born. The bags are named after her two-year-old son Bowe.
Erica is a former writer for the New York Mercantile Exchange, the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, and the law firm of Dewey and LeBoeuf LLP. She graduated from Ohio University with a degree in broadcast journalism and is pursuing her master’s degree from Columbia University.
Briefly explain your business. How did it come about?
One day not long ago, two very frustrated parents were trying to pack their car for a week at the shore. As the father loaded the car with his hands full of gear, the pack n’ play he was carrying fell from his hand, causing a domino effect as everything collapsed around him.
When they got to their beach house, they realized they had forgotten the sheet and two rods because there hadn’t been a place to put them.
“There’s gotta be a better way!” he cried out. And the bover was born.
Just throw it over your shoulder and you’re all set.
The bover’s shoulder strap gives you two free hands, large rod and sheet pockets mean you never leave gear behind, and the thick double-quilted fabric is chic and easy to wash. We also lined the interior for ease of entry and quick cleaning.
What is a typical work day like?
What has been a struggle while starting up your company?
Figuring out the legal and tax needs.
What did you do in your past work life?
Corporate communications writer.
What have been some of your major challenges?
One of the biggest challenges has been figuring out how to handle all aspects of a business - marketing, legal paperwork, incorporation, taxes, website design, and press - without having a lot of experience in any of these areas.
On those impossible days, what motivates you to keep going?
I really enjoy what I'm doing. I'm lucky I get to be my own boss and adjust my schedule to fit my family's needs.
What is your balancing secret in managing a business and family?
Lots of help!
What is next for your business?
I'm looking to add car seat bags for airline travel.
Do you have any advice for other mom entrepreneurs that are starting out and struggling, or are on the fence about starting a business?
Keep going and ask for help. You'd be amazed at some of the connections you'll find simply by asking.