I had a chance to catch up with Boone Skis owner, Erik Boone, last month and ask how things were looking for the upcoming season.Â First of all, I know that he’d been working on his factory and trying to streamline production. So I asked him what has he been working on this Summer and how’s the factory update coming along?
“Factory is good. Â Continuing to work on getting our all new 177cm park ski dialed in for faster production here at our Oakland shop. Right now our process is still very custom and labor intensive but we’re getting there little by little!”
Erik, how has your growth been over the last few years and what do you expect in the future?
“We roughly doubled our revenue each year for the past three years.Â Â I’d like to keep that trend going for another few years.”
What a great year last year was for snow, especially in the West. Did all that snow impact sales and or types of skis sold?
“Yes it did! If we had more we could have sold more.Â I think the snow was great – again we sold out of everything so I can’t complain.”
“This is a good question, asÂ funding will impact this but we have some amazing new models lined up – the only thing stopping us is $$ but we’re doing everything we can to continue to deliver some awesome products!”
You are one of the few ski companies that offer a variety of choices for topsheets for the same model of skis.Â If I were to choose, I especially like the Underdog for a park ski and the Space Ghost for my powder ski choice. So let me know if youÂ have any blemished onesÂ lying around!Â Since you have so many graphics toÂ available, are you planning on having any some new graphics lined up for this season?
“We have a ton of new stuff.Â Check out our lookbook online on the home page of Booneskis.com on the lower right hand box”
I think its really cool thatÂ Boone offers a variety of graphics to choose from for your customers.Â Most people like to haveÂ a choice and this must really go far for customer satisfaction. Do you alsoÂ do the design work?
“We work with a great group of artists. Â A lot of our stuff comes from our team and my own art direction working internally with our graphic designer Robert Lievanos. Â We also get submissions from other artists around the world like this Live Graf Art Submission done in the streets of Sydney Australia. Â We also get submissions from our athletes as well.”
Wow, you do get a lot imput.
Ok, let’s change subjects a little and talk about sponsorships. Does Boone sponsor anyone ?
“Yes we do. Â We focus on Amateur as opposed to the biggest names out there. Â We are a regional brand with an Underdog mentality and I think that translates to our athlete team as well. Â We Â have some of the best athletes you’ve never heard of. Â That’s why several of them have moved on to much bigger names in the past year or two. Â I think the “big” guys recognize that and see us as a go-to place to pick up some overlooked athletes.”
With such fabulous conditions that were present pretty much throughout the 2010-11 season across North America, what was your best selling ski?
“Our 185 Powder Ski. Best ski we had last year. Â This year we have some new projects – I’m hoping we get them done in time for this winter but we’ll see…”
Did Boone have any surprises last season, ie: sales, type of ski sold?
So, on a final note, do you have anything else in the works?
“Yeah, lots of new stuff in the works – just a matter of $$ and getting our vendors to execute as fast as we can! Â Another big thing is our new Bamboo Stand-Up Paddle Boards. Â We’ve been having a lot of fun piloting a soft launch Â with those this summer and are hoping to sell a lot more next year. Â Another big feather in our hat is our new General Manager, Jason Badgley. He is taking over all the day-to-day operations and I’m going to focus primarily on helping with New Product Development.”
So there you have it from Erik Boone, owner of one of the true independent ski manufacturer’s.Â Â A true grassroots company trying to appeal to aÂ grassroots kind of skier.
For a sneakpeak at what’s coming for the upcoming season, check out the Boone 2011-12 catalog