ONE-ON-ONE with Zuka Sound CEO G. Orlando Prendergast
Canadian based company Zuka introduced their new in-ear stereos, Zuka ‘Soul’ for pre-order in their ‘Soul2Soul’ campaign. The ultra-thin in-ear stereos have a comfortable half ear design with an exclusive white matte finish. The Zuka ‘Soul’ is feather light due to its aluminum alloy hollow design. The advanced in-ear stereos are manufactured with a special Zuka ZSTS technology that offers crisp and powerful sound quality with up to 80 hours of music playback. Zuka ‘Soul’ has message notification, single and dual mode technology and IPX5 waterproof performance. Zuka is dedicated to bringing its customers premium brand products at reasonable prices.
Zuka’s Soul2Soul campaign will also make you feel good about your purchase of the Zuka ‘Soul’ in-ear stereos. for every purchase of a pair of this technology advanced in-ear stereos, you can purchase a second pair at 50% off and give it to an Essential worker. Zuka’s founder, through his family foundation, will continue to support cultural programs within the black community through campaigns like Soul2Soul. We caught up with Zuka’s CEO Orlando Prendergast.
ONETEN MAG: Please introduce yourself: My name is G. Orlando Prendergast. I’m of Jamaican descent and a citizen of Canada. I am a blessed father to 3 amazingly superb women and an honored God-father to an equally amazingly superb woman. A serial entrepreneur, a deal architect, with a deep and caring love for ALL people, animals, basically ALL of God’s divine creations.
ONETEN MAG: How did you come up with the name Zuka and what’s the meaning behind it? I knew I wanted to create products that will take the world by storm and the first thing that popped into my head was a ‘bazooka,’ a rocket launcher. I wanted to make a blast. The name was too definitive and so I shortened it and replaced the o’s with u and BAMM!! Zuka was launched.
ONETEN MAG: What made you get involved in the technology industry? Actually, it was a dare. I met a very well-known audio engineer through an associate of mind; he was more of an inventor and not so much of a businessman. I was brought on to commercialize his inventions. After a few months, I realized that they didn’t possess the same work ethics as I did and so I cut it short and expanded on all that I learned. I then surrounded myself with pioneers in the industry as well I drew from my own musical background, I also went back to people that I had worked with, and together we created a sound that we all were satisfied with and ‘voila’ Zuka was born.
ONETEN MAG: How long did it take you to develop the Zuka Soul wireless Bluetooth? Well, the actual design of the Soul was not developed by our team. Over the past 5 years, we developed over 10 prototypes and lost tons of money just really learning as we go. 6 of those products were chosen for mass production and then covid hits. The world fell into a computer chip shortage and us being the little guys, we suffered tremendously. I lost a lot financially and actually wanted to throw in the towel. A manufacturer kept hounding me with new designs and finally he took the initiative to ship me a few products. What is now known as the Soul, really impressed me and so we asked if we can use their design and add to it our own technologies and the ZSTS tuning system and they agreed to give us a few things exclusive to the Zuka brand.
ONETEN MAG: Now speaking of industries, what are your thoughts on the cannabis industry? FINALLY! But the legendary reggae music superstar, the late Bob Marley had been telling the world about its benefits, etc but it was only because he didn’t look like corporate America which is why no one listened. Now it is a multi-billion dollar industry only because they now find a way to tax and control the marketing and distribution of a natural plant. You can’t patent natural plants/herbs but they found a way and here we are. The industry has been very very lucrative for me. I say less!
ONETEN MAG: Tell us about the Zuka ZSTS Technology? Well, it's really our secret sauce. As McDonald’s and KFC have their secret ingredients, Zuka has its own sound tuning secrets. I won’t take full credit for it because alongside me through all the long days and sleepless nights was my man, Elliott Sairan, who is a genius to me.
ONETEN MAG: What sets your in-ear stereos apart from what’s on the market today? Entering a very saturated and competitive industry such as the audio electronics space was very challenging, to say the least. We had to really create our own little spot within that massive industry. Zuka products are all very durable and are not going to break or fall apart on you. We sourced out the best quality materials, components, etc and with a focus on costs. We are blessed enough to be a part of a large buying group where together we can purchase massive quantities of raw materials, components, etc for great prices with the purpose of passing on these savings to our customers. So, in short, our customers will be getting premium quality products at less than premium prices.
ONETEN MAG: We love what you’re doing, explain to us how are you supporting Essential Workers? Thank You! It’s a team effort, we have a very caring team and through the Soul2Soul campaign, we are proving to the world that Zuka is not like the other brands. We care and we want to show it and not just preach it. As risky as it is, we decided to forego a very large percentage of our profits to assist our customers to also show their personal appreciation to the essential workers. We could’ve easily done it ourselves by co-branding with another major brand but in talking to the team we decided to engage our customers as well. The gist of the campaign is that the customer purchases a Zuka Soul in-ear stereo at a huge discounted price. They can end it there or choose to join us in donating another Soul to an essential worker of their choosing. If they do decide that it is something that they wish to do, and then we further offer another discount to the purchaser as well as significantly reduce the price of the second Soul that they will be gifting to an essential worker in their community. I should also mention that the students have all been suffering through this whole situation as well and we definitely wouldn’t mind it if the purchasers chooses to donate to the students also. It’s a cause that we are passionate about and we hope and pray that our customers and Zuka will be able to gift a Zuka Soul to every essential worker/student. I would not mind that one bit.
ONETEN MAG: We see you guys are currently taking pre-orders when are you officially launching the in-ear stereos and head stereos? We are currently doing major press now in hope of getting the brand name and causes to the. Once that gains more traction and the public catches on then we will announce an official launch date. The pre-orders are coming in now at a steady pace. This offer is a limited offer to the public and then we will go back to our introductory price of $179.00 USD.
ONETEN MAG: What impact did Covid-19 have on your business? Enough to almost placed us into the tech archives! We lost tons of money invested in development as well as parts etc. At present we are still being affected by the global computer chip shortage and being the new guy on the block, we have absolutely no leverage as multi-billion dollar brands are suffering as well. We needed to launch this campaign to benefit the people who are risking their lives daily to save ours.
ONETEN MAG: Describe your brand in one sentence? ‘We cancel noise, not quality!!’
ONETEN MAG: Where are you looking to be in the next 5 years? Hopefully in our own lane, the one that we created together. Meaning Zuka and our loyal customers and music heads.
Photos provided by Sasha Stoltz Publicity & Management and Zuka Sound Inc.
Hear the difference… Pre-order your Zuka ‘Soul’ in-ear stereos,