In our ongoing series, we're taking you inside the Icelantic
headquarters for some one-on-one with the creators of the award
winning Icelantic AT Boards.
This week we continue our interview with Icelantic's founder,
Cassi: How have the recent trends in Fat skis affected your
Ben: You know it's definitely going in the same direction. The
right direction I guess you could say, but I still feel that what
we're producing right now is really different than almost
anything else on the market. Just with our overall shapes and
You know a lot of the companies are doing really fat skis and
twin tips, but they're all pretty specific to certain areas and
one thing that we almost pride ourselves on is just like how
diverse our skis are. You know, people see ours are definitely a
lot fatter than most. When people see that, they think they are
powder specific, or you know one-sided like the majority of the
others, but once people get on them they're really shocked how
many different snow condition and terrain they can tackle.
Cassi: What are people's reactions when they ride the skis?
Ben: Shock. You know it's crazy. We go to demos and the majority
of people come down just laughing; I think blown away with the
over all performance. We've definitely turned some skeptics into
lovers almost instantly. It's pretty cool, seeing them initially
kind of judgmental. But once people get on them they're blown
Cassi: Can you tell me about this season's skis?
Ben: The migration. Pretty much what we've done for the upcoming
season was pretty much kept true to our four initial models.
We decided to do the Pilgrim, Nomad and Shaman in a longer
length, about 12 centimeters longer. So, I mean, the Pilgrim
will be a 151 and a 169; the Nomad's going to be a 156 and a
168; and the Shaman's going to be a 161 and a 173.
We decided to keep the Scout specific. It's just such a unique
tool. Instead of doing a different length with that one, we
decided to do a different flex. So we're coming out with the
We're really catering that to some younger kids and then just
lighter people, you know about 100lbs and less. They won't have
to get quite as aggressive on it to really get performance out
of it. We're getting great response from 11, 12, and 13
year-olds, around that age, as an all around big mountain tool.
Cassi: And the Graphics?
Ben: You know initially we just started pretty native, and just
like home based. And now, you know, we have a good following like
around here and in the US. The product itself is just kind of
migrating all around the world right now. So we wanted to capture
that whole growth of the company graphically and just like image
wise. The theme is just like Join the Migration. We gave Travis
just the basic outline that we wanted a human migration; an
animal migration; a plant migration, just like migrating of
seeds; and then more of a mental migration, just like visualizing
Cassi: How do you see the skis in 5 years?
Ben: We're definitely broadening the line. We actually just got
done talking about what we're going to do with 08-09. We have
some really cool ideas planned out over the next 5 to 10 years.
So definitely constantly evolving the product. Evolving the
current models and then introduction of some new models. Then
also different, like, aspects to the skis, you know whether it's
a binding system or just kind of exploring the possibilities of
how to better this product, but, definitely keeping it unique and
different than almost anything out there, both visually and
Cassi: How do you see the company five years from now?
Ben: Definitely still independently run, sustaining itself, and
really distributed world wide. Really just continue to try to do
things different and, you know, just keep a pure new energy in
Really support our retailers and consumers. Just really focus on
customer service. Give the end customer anything they need big or
small. Make sure that the people who are supporting us believe in
the products and the company just as much as we do.
Cassi: What is your favorite part of taking the skis out to
resorts to have people demo them?
Ben: Seeing their excitement behind it. I'd say at least 90% of
people that get on them are really just blown away. We really
have to work hard to keep hold of the demos; the majority of
people come back and want to buy them right there. You know the
first year we were selling the skis right there, and then the
next thing we knew we were completely out of demos and didn't
have any more skis. So we decided not to sell any, and really
direct people to the retailers.
And then just turning skeptics into believers. We had a guy in
Whistler that was just a complete skeptic. You know, didn't want
to try them, but his friend was. He was just like 'those aren't
skis and dadada'; just like talking. And Anne was just like 'here
just get on them, just give them a shot'.
He got on the Shamans, and came back like three or four hours
later just cracking up.
'Can I take one more run?' We let him take one more run, and
he came back and bought them right there.
Until next time,
P.S. -- Have you missed an interview? You can catch our other
interviews here: http://www.icelanticboards.com/news-archive.htm
P.P.S. -- Nothing is better in summer than an Icelantic
flex-fit cap. We should know! Check it out:
Copyright, Icelantic LLC, 2007
Leave a comment