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ASU grad lights up the skateboard world

Former ASU grad created a business where customizable LED lights add creativity and safety to skateboards
Greg Rudolph, founder of Board Blazers, holds skateboards with his LED lights. April 18, 2015

When Greg Rudolph spotted a fellow Arizona State University student skateboarding on campus, he noticed the skateboarder had duct taped Christmas lights under his board.

"He was so excited to show it to me," Rudolph said. "I thought it was great because while the effect was pretty cool, I knew the design could be improved."

After that, Rudolph started Board Blazers, a company that designed LED lights that can be placed anywhere underneath the skateboard.

"Each light is a self-contained LED light unit. You just twist them on and off," Rudolph said.

The lights comes in packs of four. Skateboarders can choose from eight different colors, including, lights that change colors while they ride.

In four years, Board Blazers' lights have been sold all over the U.S. and in 15 other countries. Rudolph was named one of Arizona's "Top 35 Entrepreneurs Under 35" by the Arizona Republic. He even won ASU's Edson Student Entrepreneur competition.

"Provided funding, mentoring, office space, all kinds of resources," Rudolph said.

As Rudolph skates along the entrepreneurship path, he says it's been a learning process along the way.

"I really rolled up my sleeves and jumped right in," Rudolph said. "I had no real experience with any of this. So as I've gone along, frankly, as sales have grown so has my confidence."

His best advice to those who want to start their own business: Don't be afraid of what you don't know.

"If you have an idea, just take the first step toward achieving that goal," Rudolph said. "From there the second step, the third step and so on and so forth will become clear."

Board Blazers' lights aren't just for looks. Rudolph says parents are also buying them for safety reasons, such as to help illuminate their young skaters when the sun goes down.

For more information on Board Blazers, check out their official website.