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Mixed Martial Arts Legend Dan Caldwell Taps Into Children's Fashions

Feb 9, 2011 – 10:47 AM
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Chris Epting

Chris Epting Contributor

"Both parents and kids are loving the styles and fashions we're making available. We get great e-mails from happy parents, and as a father of three, that really means a lot."

Call it the softer side of Dan Caldwell, co-founder of the mixed martial arts pop culture phenomenon TapouT.

TapouT clothing and gear are one of the more stunning retail success stories in recent years. It started with an annual gross of $30,000 in 1999, and earnings approached $200 million by 2009.

But lest you think Caldwell is strictly interested in the ferocious fashion aspects of mixed martial arts, guess again. After all, his kids (ages 4, 7 and 11) also need clothes, and when Caldwell realized how much time it was taking to run from retail outlet to retail outlet in search of the coolest duds, he decided to take matters into his own hands.
Dan Caldwell
JoAnn Geffen
Dan Caldwell, co-founder of clothing and gear retailer TapouT, has created a website catering to kids' fashions and styles, and every purchase helps a charity.

That's why recently he has turned his attention to the creation of, what he calls "an exciting, edgy and empowering online children's designer-shopping experience."

To that end, goes beyond just selling clothes. It also encourages parents and children to be the best they can be, express themselves and make a difference in the world.

Kids from toddler to teenagers can dress like their favorite celebrities with brands like Diesel, Seven for All Mankind, Rock and Republic, Ed Hardy and Hurley. The site also features co-collaborators like Loren Slocum, author of "The Greatest Love," providing wisdom for a "Raising Rockstars" blog for parents.

There are weekly deals, a photo gallery, an opportunity to win a chance to be featured on the site, sponsorship of kids' sporting events and a donation made to children's charities from every purchase.

As Caldwell told AOL News, he wants rascals2rockstars to be about more than just shopping.

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"The idea certainly came about from wanting our kids to be able to feel good about the clothes they are wearing, and making it easier for people by having a one-stop shop online that features all the coolest clothes," he said.

"But there's so much more the site can do. That's why we offer contests, advice and other fun things. We ship the same day so you don't have to wait," he continued. "More importantly, though, it allows us to create a new way to generate money for children's charities, which we do with every purchase. I've been fortunate, our kids are fortunate and so this is a way to give back as well as providing clothes that will please both parents and kids alike."

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