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Waking Up a Tired Idea How you can revolutionize a stagnant product on a limited budget and still win over your target market

By Don Debelak

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

The Inventor: Ron L. Wilson II, 38, and Brian Le Gette, 38, co-founders of 180°s LLCin Baltimore

Product Description: The 180°s Ear Warmers aren't your typical earmuffs-they have been modified to fit around the back of the neck rather than over the head so users don't mess up their hair. They sell in 1,800 upscale retail stores worldwide, including L.L. Bean and REI, for an average price of $20 each.

Start-Up: About $7,000 to finance the first 250 test units and approximately $100,000 (raised from 18 graduate school friends and other private investors) to launch the company in 1995

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