Riding to the Top: The Story of Rurok Industries with PJ Tolentino
Play • 27 min

The formula for a successful business revolves around the problems it’s able to solve. Recognizing pain points for potential customers is key, but the formula for how those issues are addressed is what differentiates an average product from a great one. When it came to mountain bikes, there were a lot of brands in the world, building good bikes, but none of them were providing the highly specialized components that some avid riders were looking for. 

To really make a dent in an industry requires more than a passive interest in the product. You have to have an obsession, something that really drives you towards evolution. You have to want it even if you’re only creating for yourself. It takes vision to solve a problem, but it takes a visionary to solve it well. And if you build it, they will come. 

My guest today is P.J. Tolentino, Founder and Head Engineer at Rurok Industries. Tolentino is the textbook example of someone who transformed their passion into a career. He and his team have built a successful company by dreaming up all the ways to make mountain bikes better, and then actually doing it. Their hyper-focused attention to detail has made their bikes stand out from the crowd.

In this episode, we talk about how Rurok Industries got their start and the team’s unparalleled passion for the sport. Their dedication to constant innovation continues to pedal this specialized brand of mountain bikes forward as they swiftly gain global brand recognition. 

Some Questions I Ask:

  • How did Rurok get its name? (1:03)
  • What’s different about your bikes? (2:45)
  • What challenges did you face when you started the company? (5:00)
  • What is generative design and how do you use it? (9:25)
  • What challenges do you anticipate in the future? (16:20)
  • How are you scaling up from a local brand to a global brand? (17:58)
  • What advice do you have for other entrepreneurs? (22:25)

What You’ll Learn in this Episode:

  • How a passion for sport became an idea for a startup (1:35)
  • The super human concept of swarm optimization (6:46)
  • How Siemens' Solid Edge Software is being used in their design process (11:45)
  • How Rurok has found a silver lining during the pandemic (13:27)
  • An overview of the Rurok product line (19:32)
  • What working too hard might be trying to tell you (23:07)

Connect with P.J. Tolentino:

Connect with John Fox: 


See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

More episodes
Clear search
Close search
Google apps
Main menu