Austin Cooper Whiting has all our respect and appreciation for starting the only local wheel company in Chicago: Reed Wheels. A few shops in Chicago are currently carrying Reed Wheels, as well as in Michigan, Wisconsin, Philly, and California.
Austin began skating as a young middle schooler. What made him different from all the other little shit heads was that he had already started his own company, specializing in the distribution of skate wax, which he called Mr. Beefy Skate Wax. Kid was making impressive income for a 5th grader.
“We would just melt candles in like this sketchy cupcake thing and then shrink wrap them and sell them to kids who skated at school. I’ve always had the entrepreneurial spirit, no doubt.”
Years later Austin took his entrepreneurship to another level with Reed Wheels, a company that distributes quality urethane wheels with dope original designs. Reed is the only local wheel distribution in Chicago.
“I basically just manage everything and operate it. Its just what I’ve always been interested in doing, but you gotta be down for skating all the time. We are just people who wanna help each other out. Everyone who’s on board with Reed is super tight.”
The people at Uprise Skate Shop in Chicago were some of the first to try out the wheels. After skating them, they gave Austin a big thumbs up to move forward and distribute. Another key component to Reed is Eric Lundquist, who designs all of the amazing art work on Reed’s wheels and merchandise.
“Eric is really what makes this all possible, he’s the key to everything.”
“Being able to hook up the homies is a huge benefit. It just motivates them to make edits and share their skateboarding with an audience, show people what skateboarding is all about in our community. A good amount of homies have Reed tattoos too, now that its a real company people are psyched on it. It means something more to them and that’s fucking sick.”
Austin is a hard working individual who spends just as much time skateboarding as running his own company. Skateboarding is something that makes him feel good and gives him a sense of satisfaction.
“Skating is just a good way to see the world. We get into situations and see things we never would have seen just cause we were out skating, which is really cool. Get out and have some fun.”
Austin took an original approach on the Chicago skate community and fucking killed it. He works efficiently while maintaining an exciting and lively attitude. We can’t wait to see where his company will take him. Support the good homies and go out and get yourself some Reed Wheels!