How Joe Reynolds and Ryan Kunkel parlayed their love of extreme adventure into a $30 million enterprise.
After exploring more than 40 countries recreationally, Joe Reynolds decided it was time to turn his love of adventure into his day job. With just $5,000 he launched the first-ever Great Urban Race, a wild metropolitan quest, during which teams solve clues and complete mental and physical challenges while discovering their city in a fresh way.
In five years, Reynolds, along with partner Ryan Kunkel, has parlayed his initial investment into Red Frog Events, a Chicago-based company with more than 60 full-time employees, three signature extreme races and a serious following.
The company’s most popular event, Warrior Dash, a 5K race packed with obstacles like a pond filled with logs, a rock wall, a tunnel of flames and a sinking mud pit, made appearances in 35 cities across the country in 2011 and drew 600,000 participants. This year the company is going international for the second time, taking its events to Ireland and Great Britain. Revenue has grown from $50,000 in 2007 to a projected $85 million in 2012.
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