Sariah Tate, a graduate in communication, a mother of three and a woman who has changed thousands of diapers, was tired of lugging around a heavy baby bag that doubled as a personal bag.
Tate wanted a product that was compact enough to fit a purse and could carry everything she needed, such as diapers, wipes, disposal bags and a changing pad.
Tate couldn’t find anything that currently existed in the market, so she designed and produced the Peke·Buo with the help of her brother-in-law, Emrys Tate, a senior in business.
She started by sketching a design and made prototypes by gluing USPS postal envelopes in the shape of her imagined bag. The finished product includes spaces for any supplies a parent would need and folds out into a sanitary changing pad.
Sariah Tate and Emrys Tate entered the Peke·Buo in the Opportunity Quest, hosted by the U’s Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute. This competition focuses on the executive summary in business development, the part that addresses the status, future and chances of success in a company. Contestants had to submit a video with their business plan, which Emrys Tate said he believed helped their product to the finish line.
The Peke·Buo won third place in Opportunity Quest, earning $2,000 toward putting it on the market.
“We didn’t think we would place,” Emrys said. “There were a lot of good entries, but I think the judges liked our tenacity and how close we were to launch.”
Using the money from Opportunity Quest, Sariah and Emrys filed a provisional application for a patent, a process that takes two to three months. Emrys Tate said they expect to hear back from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in about a month and a half.
Meanwhile, the duo is working on a video for a Kickstarter campaign and they intend to post their page in May. If their campaign follows the pattern of responses they’ve been receiving, they said they think fundraising will be a success.