This story first published at the Fayetteville Observer.
Fayetteville, NC — From an early age, Chris Cruz had a bit of an entrepreneurial spirit.
He used to sell chocolate bars in elementary school. In middle school, he brought Capri Sands to a classmate to sell for his dollar.
“I think I always wanted to be my own boss,” said Cruz, who was medically discharged from the Army last month at Fort Bragg.
His own path to becoming a boss continued with joining the Army, which he had wanted to do since he was five years old.
“I was born on Guam before moving to Kentucky. Most people from Guam enlist in the military to get off the island,” he said. “But I also enlisted for service. Most of my family are military.”
Cruz’s experience in the Army inspired him to start a company called Anubis Design Group in 2018.
The name Anubis comes from watching the movie The Mummy, the Egyptian god who kept evil out of Egypt.
“It’s kind of mysterious, like how some of the military come out of the shadows and darkness to stop the bad guys,” he said.
A primarily online business, the business specializes in creating tactical nylon equipment and soft goods, producing customized apparel for military personnel, law enforcement, and civilians.
Cruz said his focus on tactical nylon gear was because he frequently changed his military gear “to make it more personalized or better.”
“People in my unit found out I was changing theirs and asked me to make the necessary changes. And it started from there,” he said. .
According to Cruz, in 2018 one of his comrades in the 5th Special Forces Group modified a chest rig (a tactical vest used to hold equipment) and asked him to add a few patches. I made a request to
The friend was happy with the job and encouraged Cruz to start his own business.
Cruz said he moved from hand sewing to using heavier industrial machinery.
He customizes and creates armor plate carriers to hold ballistic armor, chest rigs to hold ammo and other gear, and general purpose pouches.
“Vests are what we’re better known for, but it’s not just gear. increase.”
Cruz was able to showcase his gear at the 3rd Special Forces Group Diving Contest at Fort Bragg in June. He plans to attend a gun show in Fayetteville before moving to Texas.
Although he moved to Texas, Cruz said he has four other soldiers working with him and that his business is primarily an e-commerce model, allowing customers to order online.
“We have more accessible products in stock, but we can also custom order,” he said.
Cruz said he welcomes military customers, but wants to reach beyond the military.
Custom orders are subject to a non-refundable fee of $35 and take approximately 7-10 business days, although some requests may take longer.
“The players other than me are active players, so there is a possibility that they will change.