“Don’t let a bad experience take away all the good that you should have for the vast majority of those you can interact with.”– Larry O’Connor
With entrepreneurship being a tag phrase these days, it’s my honor to introduce you to an entrepreneur who helped develop the landscape of Mac upgrades and more. In this episode, Setorii Pond speaks to Larry O’Connor, founder and CEO of OWC. We learn about the early days in the barn to the global company of today, asking him about key decisions, hard times, obstacles, lessons learned, celebrities he has worked with, and much, much more.
Starting over three decades ago, Larry came into the Apple upgrades space and is still going strong with OWC as a technology leader. He was frustrated with the high cost and options for Apple memory expansion, so he came to a better solution and started providing affordable memory upgrades online at 14 years old.
Today, OWC is one of the most respected suppliers of Apple product upgrades and accessories. OWC’s products include storage, accessories, memory, and more for Apple and PCs and peripherals and are found in millions of computers worldwide. OWC extends people’s computing investment with amazing performance, larger and faster storage, and a longer lifespan. Products are sold under the OWC brand and distributed through MacSales.com and Amazon.
Larry truly cares about bettering the environment and has always believed that sustainability is good business. In 2008, his company was named one of the Top 12 Green-IT Companies by Computerworld Magazine for the innovative, environmentally responsible design of OWC’s corporate headquarters. In October 2009, OWC was the first technology manufacturer/distributor in the U.S. to be 100% on-site wind-powered. In March 2010, the OWC corporate campus was awarded the highest achievable leadership level in energy and environmental design known as LEED® Platinum Certification.
OWC was honored in Inc. 5000’s Fastest-Growing Privately Owned Companies in America. Larry and OWC have supported many wonderful charities and organizations like Toys for Tots, Charity: Water, The John Lennon Bus, Orphaned Starfish, Helping Paws Animal Shelter, Dell Children’s Hospital, Splash, African Waters, Hurricane Relief Fund, Got Your 6, New Hope Community Food Pantry, Austin Medical Center, Ocean Elders, Build.org, WEDO, Jam In The Van, Humans in Space, and many more.
Larry and OWC have received product awards, company awards, best CEO awards, and more. Technology innovation never stands still, and over the years, Larry has led OWC and its subsidiaries to add thousands of consumer electronics and computer hardware products to its inventory. His products have even gone to space with artistic creations from ZEDD, Blanco Brown, Brad Paisley, Desmond Child, Dragon Force, Tim McGraw, Wyclef Jean.
Larry O’Connor is a gamechanger because when others said upgrading machines was not possible, Larry knew we could, and he pushed to provide the solutions people needed. His products were used for major motion pictures like The Godfather Coda, Part III, The Death of Michael Corleone, and environmentally important documentaries like Kiss the Ground. Larry explains how excited he was about the Kiss the Ground premiere. Its message on regeneration is an incredible way to not only reverse our CO2 problem but make everything else reducing CO2 means something.
OWC was trusted by the producers and musical directors for the Super Bowl half-time show (with artists like JLO, Shakira, Guns n’ Roses, Nine Inch Nails, and Billy Joel). These industry professionals and valued customers rely on OWC to ensure their music, work, and creations are safe.
Beyond OWC, product creation, Macs, technology, and the environment, Larry’s other passions include being a film producer, philanthropist, investor, space enthusiast, and more. To learn more about Larry, OWC, and all he is doing, you can go to owc.com or MacSales.com.