While attending a Texas Tech Homecoming game Tommy DeLoach, owner of WERX Design, LLC and creator of the INVISI-Ball™ wall mounting system didn’t realize that forgetting his son’s football in their hotel room would change his life. He purchased a collectible ball to toss around before the game. He intended on mounting it in his home office after its one-time use. Upon returning home, DeLoach could not find a mount that would display his souvenir football as if it were floating in midair, and anything that came close would cause significant damage to the ball.
October 5, 2016
Sports Memorabilia Mounting System with NC Roots Works to Expand Brand Reach
With no solution to his football display needs, a Triangle man develops his own patented showcase
At a loss, and with the encouragement of his wife, DeLoach sketched out a concept for his ideal football wall mount, and the INVISI-Ball wall mount was born. DeLoach is attacking the sports memorabilia market from his headquarters in New Hill, NC — about 20 miles south-west of Raleigh.
Despite selling more than 4,000 units since his site’s launch in 2013, DeLoach admits that there has been a learning curve trying to market a product that fluctuates between the sports and the interior decor industry.
DeLoach took his product and auditioned for the ABC show Shark Tank twice, but was not selected to be filmed in the tank. One of the feedback points he received was that his market audience was too narrow.
“The [sports] industry doesn’t really recognize my product because it isn’t the same as what they have seen,” DeLoach says about sports memorabilia products in today’s market. “I think my product interests them, but I have gotten a lot of, ‘we don’t know that much about you,’ from them right now.”
In order to gain familiarity within the industry, DeLoach routinely pairs his wall mounts with footballs or basketballs in auctions or charity events.
Beyond his virtual storefront, DeLoach has expanded his market to three stores that carry and sell his mounts. Looking forward, DeLoach admits that getting Dick’s Sporting Goods to sell and use his mounting system in their displays would be a defining achievement.
DeLoach is quick to point out that he’s just getting started. He is designing mounts for hockey pucks and shoes, and has a skateboard mount in development. He has also completed custom orders, like what he calls the “INVISI-Bell,” a bell mounting system he made for a Mississippi State fan.
As long as there is a way to successfully mount an item without damaging it, DeLoach says he will keep on designing products.