Any wild mind can think back on its own far-fetched business idea; you’re sitting around chatting with your friends over a drink, or maybe you’re taking a long road trip by yourself. The wheels start spinning and before you know it, you have a company name, slogan, and the date of resignation for your “real job”. For many of us, these ideas simply stay just that-a logo doodled on a beverage napkin. Maybe we keep the napkin, maybe we don’t.
I can think of three guys who kept the bev nap, ran with it, and are launching their company on October 11th, roughly 3 years after the once-thought-crazy-idea. 33.black is far more than just clothing, and if you keep reading, you’ll be so excited to buy a ticket for the launch party that you may not even read this whole article (but I hope you do). Not only that, you’ll get to know the men behind the operation, and maybe even get your own engine running.
What started as a tiny printing operation in a garage has erupted. Knowing it would take time and money to get their company off the ground, Geno Pescio, Matt Cummings, and Nicolai Caviglia were mostly printing logos for other businesses and events. Within a few years, they’ve built an online store, website, Facebook fan page, and are throwing an epic upcoming launch party.
“There is something really special about this company,” says Matt Cummings, co-founder of 33.black. “I have felt it since the day I heard the name. I was living in L.A. when Nicolai and Geno called me and said “33.black”. My heart raced, and the second I got home that day I went straight work with a pencil and paper trying to design that name into something.”
When I asked Geno about how they decided on the name, he smiled and said, “Whenever we play roulette, we put it on 33 Black…it’s what we’ve always done.”
It makes sense for the founders of 33.black to connect with a brand near to their roots. Geno, Matt, and Nicolai were all born and raised in Nevada and live in Reno. “Reno is the best place on earth,” says Pescio, who moved from Vegas and attended UNR. “You’re a stone-throw away from Tahoe, Napa, and anything you want to do.”
Cummings, originally from McGill says, “It has a small town feel, like home, and we have the desert, lake, and mountains all within 20 minutes.”
Don’t get the impression and these guys are quietly kayaking in Tahoe or taking a scenic drive to taste wine every weekend. No. It’s not that they don’t enjoy doing these things, it’s that they prefer to live a little louder. You see, 33.black is a lifestyle, which is a unique statement that sets this brand apart from others. “We’re in a huge market, and we try to partner with other small businesses rather than competing,” explains Pescio. “It’s working together with people rather than sponsoring people. We aim for versatility.”
33.black is far more than just apparel; it’s about community involvement. You might spot 33.black on a beefed up sand or race truck, especially because they recently teamed up with Samco Fabrication to form an off-road race team. Or maybe you’ll see 33.black running through the streets during a 200 mile race like the Reno-Tahoe Odyssey. But it doesn’t stop there. These guys strive for win-win business opportunities helping local non-profit efforts, such as the Holland Project, along with art, music, and performers of all ages.
An approach such as this can only be traced back to strong work ethic, flexibility, and a willingness to grow as a business owner. “It has really opened my eyes to a new way of thinking,” Cummings describes. “I’ve actually gotten comfortable being uncomfortable. I enjoy it because it gives me something to strive for and to gain a new confidence in. For example, I have always been nervous approaching people and striking up a conversation. Now I love it! I love that with the people and all the networking we do, 33.black is expanding and opening up doors for growth.”
Expanding is a subtlety; never did these three Nevada boys imagine that in October of 2013 they would be hosting a launch party with bands such as Royal Bliss, Livitz Livitz, and John Gray at the Knitting Factory in Reno (buy your ticket). To see what has developed from a scribbled name on a piece of paper leaves Geno, Matt, and Nicolai at awe. “For us this is such a profound statement we are making. There is so much heart and passion behind 33.black. This is our life, we live and breathe this…INCREDIBLE to say the least!”
“Why do I wear 33.black? You mean besides the fact that they have some of the sickest looking gear that I’ve seen come out in a while? And how about the fact that I just so happen to grow up practically next door to these dudes… Well, for me it’s more than just that, it’s the meaning behind the clothing, and what they stand for. It’s a metaphor of standing at the roulette table, putting it all on 33 Black and letting it ride, the thrill, the rush, the chance to win it all just because you BELIEVE. 33.black isn’t just a clothing line, it’s a principle. Follow everything you believe with all your heart. Go big or Go HOME!”
This brand is so versatile and unique; it’s bigger than a brand. It’s cooler than a logo slapped on some gear. It’s three kickass guys who felt it in their bones that they could transform this idea into a reality. It’s a badass crusade. Sports. Music. Dirt. Field. Road. Bikes. Trucks. Passion. Community. Music. Hardwork. Play. Dedication. Fun. Risk. Reward. 33.black.