FORT WORTH, Texas — Patrick and Jennifer Coddou are a husband and wife team with a sharp business sense.
They founded a razor and men's grooming company in their home on Fort Worth's Southside four years ago, and now they are drawing national attention through an appearance on ABC's Shark Tank.
"I invented this razor five years ago to solve a personal problem," said Patrick, explaining that many multi-blade razors from traditional companies caused razor bumps and other irritation.
Coddou, who worked as an aerospace engineer, took his design skills to create a razor that he says will last a lifetime. He and his wife sell what is now a full line of grooming products at Supply.co. And after securing funding on Shark Tank, they're already seeing a big boost.
"We aired November 3rd. And by November 5th, we had already hit a record month of sales," Patrick said.
The national exposure is good for their company and for their city. Fort Worth has a growing startup scene, particularly on the city's Southside.
"We're super proud to be from Fort Worth. We're super proud to be Fort Worth entrepreneurs," Jennifer said.
Closer to downtown, the Near Southside is home to the revitalized South Main area, where once-neglected historic buildings are being refurbished to house offices, as well as bars, restaurants and cafes. Mike Brennan with Near Southside Inc. says that those third-space locations, like newly-opened Arcadia Coffee, can help spark a creative environment where businesses can be incubated.
"You've got a lot of smart people here. You have a lot of folks with great ideas," Brennan said. "Social spaces are a key ingredient."
The City of Fort Worth is helping to foster that environment too. Leaders recently launched a new medical innovation district called iter8. They want to support healthcare startups near the already large medical center on the Southside.
"We would love for there to be a cluster of these biotech companies that find homes in Fort Worth," said Brennan.
Brennan and others believe a mix of entrepreneurial businesses is key to the future of the Southside and the city as a whole. And the successes of entrepreneurs like the Coddous show the promise of the area.
"it's just another story that can mark Fort Worth as a place where those dreams can happen," said Brennan.