NBX develops, designs and creates innovative gear tailored for the vehicle based adventure travel market, aka overland market. We promote trail etiquette and treading lightly, always leaving places cleaner than you found them, which is why the tire mounted Garbage and Recycling bag is our flagship product. Our mission is to promote respectful and mindful offroad travel so that our incredible nature can be preserved and enjoyed by future generations. We do this by taking small groups on various trips and showcasing our adventures on YouTube.
Tell us about yourself?
My full time job is serving as an army officer in the CAF. I joined in 2008 in order to serve my country during wartime and I am still serving to this day. NBX evolved out of East Coast Overland. This was my overland lifestyle brand / events I was running, and after we developed the GARBs, which were meant to be a better version of the trasharoo, the only spare tire garbage bag on the market at that time, that I had on my Jeep, and for which I had a few ideas on how to make it better; the company name was changed form East Coast Overland to North Bound Expeditions. Around the same time I started filming our trips for YouTube, which attracted a lot of viewers to come join us for trips. Today we have a decent lineup of original design products that were designed from scratch and are made right here in Atlantic Canada, with materials from other Canadian suppliers. I work with other veteran companies as well in order to provide that mutual support that we have grown accustomed to in the military.
If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?
Don’t go into business with people that don’t share your values.
What problem does your business solve?
NBX Trail Gear creates several innovative ways to store and carry gear on your vehicle, but most notably we solve the problem of waste storage and ensure people have a way to take home all their garbage and recycling that accumulates from traveling and camping with their vehicle, and keeping the two types or refuse separate for easier disposal upon return. The GARB, which stands for Garbage And Recycling Bag, serves a couple of additional functions above and beyond waste storage. It’s also designed to carry traction boards, 4x 1 lbs. propane tanks, and can be used to carry fire wood and other bulky items that may be better off kept outside.
What is the inspiration behind your business?
The inspiration for the business is based on a passion for overland adventures, solving problems and being creative. Storage solutions is the primary inspiration and we want to provide customers ways to have a better experience through having convenient and well thought-out products that address specific needs. All our products are based on personal real world experiences from our own travels. If there is something that can be done better, I sit down and draw up a design and figure out what materials will be best suited to make it the most robust and lasting product. We are inspired by keeping the brand Canadian, we believe in making quality products that last, which contrasts a lot of today’s throw-away cheap, replaceable items. Rather than buying multiple iterations of the same cheap product, we believe that paying a little more once, is better than paying a little less, several times over.
What is your magic sauce?
NBX is different from the competition by virtue of being the first Canadian manufacturer of original trail gear specific for overland vehicles. With its origins dating back as far as 2016, the first thing I designed to make this sort of travel easier was converting a basic utility trailer into something that could carry a roof tent and my gear. Ever since then ideas to improve the overland travel experience have materialized into what NBX is today, including creating videos that inspire others to go out and enjoy this hobby, always making a point on the importance of cleaning up campsites and trails, which more often than not means cleaning up other people’s garbage. But we practice what we preach and hope to inspire others to do better. Maybe that’s the secret sauce?
What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?
The goal is to keep growing in terms of creating more original designs, increase volume of production of the current products, expand into event organization and hosting and grow bigger from a film production perspective. The long term vision for NBX would ideally include vehicle and trailer rentals for people flying into NB to embark on an overland journey without having to ship their own vehicles across the ocean.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?
When I first started with a business partner, he left the business as soon as we had become profitable, he left without warning, without discussion, and taking our only seamstress with him, and launched a direct competition of the business, despite this being a flagrant violation of our partnership agreement. This meant I was faced with 2 options. Give up or restart from scratch. Giving up wasn’t an option, I had come too far, invested too much time, effort and money, so I chose to restart, re-invest into buying all the materials and hire a new seamstress and redesign all our products that we had both worked on developing, manufacturing and bringing to market over the years.
But this was a blessing in disguise because now I have all the freedom to implement all the changes and product ideas I always wanted to without having to contend with his ego and negativity. Now I have free reign and our products are better than ever, and the business is doing better than ever!
How do people get involved/buy into your vision?
People can reach out by email to [email protected] to ask questions, we frequently receive inquiries about overlanding in NB, where to go, or how to join us on a trip. We post most of our trips on our website at www.nbexpeditions.com but also on our Facebook page North Bound Expeditions. Additionally we host 2 Facebook groups, one for selling and buying used overland gear called Overland Gear Trading Post – Canada, and the other being a public group to discuss any overland matters called New Brunswick Overland. For anyone wanting to follow our adventures, our YouTube channel can be found here: https://youtube.com/c/NorthBoundExpeditions
Thanks for reading, see you on the trails!