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Friday, Apr 12, 2024

Athletic Tape Becoming Big Business

When Seneca Adams launched Hampton Adams, an athletic and kinesiology tape company, his initial impetus was to honor his parents. His mother is a nurse, he said, and his father a football coach. So, he created the e-commerce business in 2016 with the hopes of selling products that cater to their collective audiences.

Little did he know, Hampton Adams, headquartered in Fallbrook, would immediately take off.

Hampton Adams has not only met the needs of over 200,000 customers to date, it has also grown by 100% year-over-year, said Adams, and has become a multi-million-dollar company.

This year, it is on track to nearly double its revenue, according to Adams.

Industry Close to His Heart

“The company came to be in 2016 when I found myself looking for a product within the sports medicine industry – something close to my heart,” said the Los Angeles native, who relocated to San Diego shortly after attending Santa Monica College. “I grew up playing football and my mom being a nurse, it prompted me to do some research. I had a flashback to when I was a kid, when I was playing football and was taking the tape off my cleats and had this gunk and goo on there from the tape. I thought, ‘that’s got to be fixed. There has to be a better way to do this.’ So, I set it out to do it.”

Adams took a couple hundred dollars from his own savings and, after meeting with roughly 50 companies, teamed up with a manufacturer that was able to create a formulation to his liking: one that wouldn’t leave a residue or rash on the skin, but was sturdy enough to do the job, he said. He then created the official Hampton Adams store on Amazon.

The first product the company rolled out was an athletic tape that is latex and rubber free, said Adams, followed by adhesive wraps and a dozen others. The product line, he said, has been an instant hit, causing him to sell out on inventory numerous times as a result.

Sold Out in a Week

“I started with $700 to my name, purchased products and sold out in a week,” he said. “I took that cash, put the money back in, which was like $1,500, and sold out of that. Then I took out a loan and bought $7,000 worth, or 10 times as much product. That lasted a week and a half. After that, I asked friends and family for support and then entered Accion, a program that lends money to start-ups in San Diego, and they gave me $15,000. Since then, the business has financed itself, through profits from sales and wherever we could find favorable financing that allows us to scale.”

Yet, customers appear to be satisfied.

“I bought this tape to help with my shins and my quads,” said a customer named Tracy Repchuk online. “During that time, I taped both areas and they never came off. What I liked as well is it wasn’t loud (and) blended (well) with my skin.”

The reason for Hampton Adams’ success is because he didn’t set out to create demand, said Adams, instead, he tapped into a demand that already existed. He used Amazon reviews and comments to find out what customers’ problems were and figure out a way to solve it.

Go-To Sports Medicine Brand

Down the line, Adams hopes to continue to grow the Hampton Adams brand.

His plan is to expand into 14 countries, using the Amazon network and platform, which will also allow it to offer two-day shipping to those destinations. Adams also hopes to be in every physical therapy office in the country, he said.

“The goal is to be the sports medicine brand when it comes to recovery, period,” said Adams.


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