Richard Joseph Pearce was born April 3, 1961 to John Pearce an auto mechanic and Mildred a waitress. A natural athlete from an early age, Pearce excelled at many sports but his first love was the physically demanding sport of Motocross. The Pearce family, including his older brother and sister moved to St. Petersburg Florida in 1970. The family although of meager means was not short on love. In the tenth grade, shortly after having his IQ tested at 143, Pearce was forced to quit school and work with his father. His mother was dying and the medical bills were overwhelming.
Pearce’s dream was to race motocross professionally. His dream ended after breaking his back in a near fatal riding accident. Surgeons told him he would be wheel chair bound, but he endured painful rehabilitation and regained his ability to walk. Richard’s life from that point forward would be a series of overcoming what most would consider insurmountable odds, especially for a man with little education, no professional skills, and scanty funds. Yet for all that he was lacking, Pearce possessed an entrepreneurial spirit, and a creative, solution-oriented intellect which assisted him in recognizing opportunities others overlooked.
In 1986, he went to work for a local cash register company delivering old fashioned, heavy, mechanical NCR cash registers. After a year in a half, Pearce was ready to quite due to what he felt were shady business practices. He agreed to stay if he could run the new electronic sales division open and honestly. Pearce went on to attend every school he could find and learned real world business from the back room, not the board room. He became the number one salesmen in the country for a point of sales software system from Canada known as Maximiser Software. Then, one night on his way home from a marathon session programming a $68,000 bar system, he fell victim to a tragic car accident which nearly ended his life for the second time (See the enclosed article from Success Magazine). While recuperating in the hospital, his boss visited and ask if he could walk him through programming the system so he could collect the money. Pearce’s father, a bear of a man, literally picked him up and threw him out of the hospital room.
Pearce’s father returned to the hospital room and proposed that they sell the family home to start their own cash register business. A few weeks later, Pearce was out of the hospital, the home sold, and they found themselves starting a business with a grand total of $16,000. Pearce knew it was do or die, failure meant homelessness, and was not an option.
After four years, they sold that company to a local rival for 1.2 million. After paying the medical bills amassed during treatment of his now deceased mother, Pearce used the balance to launch a start-up business by the name of Cash-Graf. It was the culmination of the experience gained from the thousands of hours Pearce had spent in the back room of businesses. Many years ahead of its time, it would within a few short years grow to over 38 million in annual revenues, and more than 120 employees. Rush Limbaugh became the company spokesperson. The company was eventually valued at $120 million.
Along the way, Pearce founded an apparel and sportswear company called Refuze2Luze. Wishing to devote all of his time to his software company he sold for a few hundred thousand dollars. The trade mark is currently owned by DC shoe company.
Pearce would go on from there to recognize the need for a portable version of heated concrete sidewalks and build a company named Therma Products. Legendary Denver Broncos quarterback, John Elway, was spokesperson and partner.
It was after selling that company that Pearce went through a vicious divorce. With his life’s savings all but depleted Pearce decided to spend the next few years focusing on quality time with his son Ryan, and Daughter Taylor.
As a hobby, Pearce became part owner of a local gym. He was still severely limited due to lingering injuries from his horrific accidents, and had ballooned up to almost 270 lbs. A constant burning and numbness in his lower back and left leg had been with him for some 20 years. This led to his discovering the benefits of herbal medicine. In 2007, he decided to use every penny he had left to buy a company, known as Health Advantage. Pearce added the word Research and Development to the name, which allowed him to create the acronym, H.A.R.D. Nutrition for Health Advantage Research and Development. Pearce created, and patented, the world’s first two-stage cap system. Pearce accepted an offer to sell the company last June.
It was during Pearce’s submersion into the world of fitness and body building that he recognized a void in the world of exercise equipment. He designed the world’s first total body High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) and Strength Training Device The Frog™ which is now out of the R&D phase, patent pending, and ready to change the course of physical fitness for people not just in the USA, but around the globe.
Pearce says, “Anyone who tells you they hit a homerun every time they stepped up to the plate, probably never really played the game.” With tremendous lessons learned, he is prepared for his next chapter and largest venture yet, with his latest company Frog Fitness. The Frog™ is a product which will blaze new trails in the fitness industry!