WICHITA – Todd Dechant has spent a career as an employee and consultant helping companies and individuals bring new products to the market.
Now, he’s going to do it for himself with a new product called the OxCart, which he says is an improved dump cart for tractors and ATVs.
During the last couple of years he’s been working on the OxCart, he’s also been helping other inventors launch their products.
“I got on an ‘I know a guy’ list,” Dechant says. “That was a lot of fun. I just don’t have time to do that anymore.”
When Dechant decided he wanted to create his own product, he did a category analysis to look for dead categories “that didn’t really have a lot of innovation in them.”
He says dead categories are ones that aren’t growing in sales.
“One that just kind of seemed glaring to me … was the dump cart category,” Dechant says.
“We tested a lot of products out there,” he says. “I started focusing on trying to get more out of a riding lawn mower.”
He says there’s not been much innovation in the field in the last couple of decades.
“The only way to grow a category is to come up with innovation.”
Dechant says he’s added durability and stability with the OxCart.
“You’ve got more control in the dumping process,” he says. “The pivot point is kind of like a teeter-toter in most dump carts.”
He says that means when loads shift they start sliding quickly.
“It’s very harsh and abrupt.”
He’s also added a power-assisted gas lift and wider, higher quality tires.
Dechant debuted the OxCart, which will sell for $300 to $349, today at the Green Industry and Equipment Expo in Kentucky.
He says his first deal to sell the OxCarts will be with Costco.com.
“It’s all ready to go.”
Dechant doesn’t want the carts on the website until he sees them first, though.
The product is arriving at his California-based warehouse next month.
“I need to see it delivered,” Dechant says. “We’re just trying to walk before we run.”
He says he’s been fortunate to stay in contact with buyers he used to do business with.
“If you do right by people, they’re going to do right by you.”
To that end, Dechant says he wants to be clear that he’s “not a one-man show.”
“I’ve been blessed to have a lot of smart people support my business in many different areas.”
He says he’s learned a lot from past employers, such as Harper Trucks’ Phil Ruffin, who “only spent money on things that made money.”
Dechant also acknowledges that he may have an advantage over some other inventors.
“People have so many great ideas out there, and they just don’t know how to get them to market.”