WATERVILLE — There is not much holding back precocious teenager and budding entrepreneur Parker Redlevske of Oakland.

He can obtain a permit to open a store, order supplies and oversee operations. Just do not ask him to sign for a FedEx delivery. At 14, he is not old enough.

Age, however, did not prevent Parker from opening a technology repair business in May at the Elm Plaza shopping mall on upper Main Street in Waterville, near Interstate 95.

He used his own money to open a Techy franchise after attending a business boot camp with his stepfather in Florida. The event featured Grant Cardone, a business owner, speaker and social media fixture.

Techy, headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, repairs electronic devices, such as smartphones, computers, tablets and gaming consoles, among other tech-related services.

Parker Redlevske, 14, right, disassembles an iPhone for a diagnostic check Thursday at his Techy store location at Elm Plaza on upper Main Street in Waterville, with his business partner, Nick Rancourt. Michael G. Seamans

At the business boot camp, Parker was called onto the stage and allowed to ask Cardone, an entrepreneur and best-selling author, what advice he would give a young person.


Cardone gave Parker a goal of saving $10,000. The interaction was shared with Cardone’s nearly 2.2 million followers on YouTube, leading the owner of Techy to reach out to Parker to help him open his own store.

Parker, his stepfather, Jon Irwin, and his mother, Amy Irwin, all received training from Techy. Before the training, Parker had mainly learned to repair smartphones from YouTube videos.

“When he went on stage, that’s when I realized he wasn’t just fooling around taking things apart at home,” Jon Irwin said. “It made me realize he’s learning and wants to make a business. When all this happened and Techy reached out, I felt like we had to do this.”

Parker Redlevske, 14, takes apart an iPhone on Thursday at the Techy store he opened earlier this year at Elm Plaza on upper Main Street in Waterville. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel

It costs $15,000 to secure a license for a Techy franchise. Parker came up with the money, and Techy helped with the buildout of the store. The company owner flew in for the opening.

To save the $15,000, Parker fixed smartphones, secured investors and did marketing.

“It was tiring,” he said, adding his family was supportive.


Jon Irwin said Parker was involved in nearly every step of the process, including meeting with the landlord and lawyers.

Being self-employed means Parker does not need a work permit and can work nearly full time. While the business is important to Parker, his family makes sure to prioritize his education by requiring three hours of home schooling daily during the school year.

His parents also make sure he has days off.

“He’d probably sleep (at his Techy franchise) if we let him,” Jon Irwin said, laughing.

Parker Redlevske, 14, laughs with his business partner, Nick Rancourt, as they repair electronic devices Thursday at their Techy store at Elm Plaza on upper Main Street in Waterville. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel

Parker had attended Messalonskee schools, but left at the end of the eighth grade to be home-schooled. It allows him to work and pursue his education at the same time. He said he does course work in the back of the store, putting in earbuds and fixing a smartphone while listening to a lesson. If needed, he pauses his schoolwork to help a customer. He is considering returning part time to public school.

“I think I found a pretty good balance (between school and work),” Parker said.


He said the store’s location, the site of a former Verizon store, is “a good spot, and it was available just as we were looking.”

While owning his own business well before he is old enough to drive, Parker is like most kids his age and enjoys hanging out with friends. He said his friends “think it’s pretty cool” he is a business owner.

He used to play basketball, football and soccer. He has two sisters and a brother. One sister likes to help at the store, Parker said.

“Usually, when we need extra help, we can have my mom help out,” he said.

Parker’s parents have full-time jobs, so Parker does the majority of the work at the store, including fixing smartphones and other devices, running the sales floor and helping customers. But he does have help from Nick Rancourt, his business partner who became part of the operation early on.

Rancourt has more than 25 years of experience repairing devices. He said Jon Irwin asked him several months ago for help, but because Rancourt has a full-time job, he could not commit. After meeting Parker and seeing his drive, however, Rancourt decided to become a minority owner.

“I just kind of jumped in and haven’t left,” Rancourt said. “We both kind of learn from each other as we go. We complement each other.”

While Parker focuses on smartphones and tablets, Rancourt’s specialty is computers and gaming consoles. Parker’s abilities at a young age sometimes surprise Rancourt, who said he is learning new things from the teenager.

He’s a good kid. He’s got a good head on his shoulders,” Rancourt said. “The fact that he’s opened this store pretty much on his own is an amazing feat.”

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