Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Banff
    Posts
    20,273

    Sombrio clothing and footwear is dead

    sad to see, but nice that they posted a reason and back history

    http://bike.sombriocartel.com/2013/11/29/never-dead/




    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    Dear friends, fans, and people of the global Sombrio circle,

    We have some very difficult news to share with you, but first a little history.

    Our customers and fans, love the innovations and products that Sombrio bring to market each year, and we thank you for this. This brand is the result of the dedicated riders past and present, so hats off to all of you. Back in 2011 and in an effort to grow with market demand, and share our vision with a broader audience, we sought out consultants to help us flourish.

    The consultants had a grand vision of making Sombrio into a big company very fast with a network of our own retail stores. It seemed almost too good to be true but they were convinced it would work. In 2012 we raised funds from an investor, added staff to a great team, invested in systems, products, and began to execute on this growth strategy.

    Sadly, it went sideways, as the retail expansion plan was way more expensive to execute than we were led to believe, barred with issues, and stores never opened. In an attempt to bridge the void, and re-kindle stability our family and primary investor stepped up. Our team re-aligned on our core channels, and worked tirelessly to good result.

    However, even with all the positives achieved this year from our team, and a great season mapped for next – the perils of failed expansion has left the company with a significant gap – and one the investors have just weeks ago bowed out.

    With these challenges we’re in an incredibly painful position in that we have to pause or halt business until we find a way forward, or a buyer. Granted, our door is still open, and were operational, our future is quite uncertain.

    We want to thank everyone that has supported us and we apologize to anyone that may be disrupted in the process. We do remain optimistic Sombrio will land on its feet. We hope you understand that we did, and are doing everything during these tumultuous times to see Sombrio continue to live and breathe the two wheel culture.

    Sombrio’s future will need someone with the resources, expertise and vision to continue bringing Sombrio’s innovative, high performance riding apparel to a huge market looking for an alternative to the status quo. We look forward to finding that white knight, rebuilding our team and making a charge for the peak.

    Sincerely Dave Watson, Founder & President

    If you’re a dealer, and are concerned with your 2014 pre-season order, or have press related inquires please email us, and keep in the loop at hello@sombriocartel.com


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    the big dirty
    Posts
    683
    sounds like they lined up a huck that was too big.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    SLC
    Posts
    6,239
    That sucks! Some of their stuff is questionable but a lot of it is really nice. And I felt like they stood for a core of MTB that not many companies "get".
    I'm so hardcore, I'm gnarcore.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Land of Brine Shrimp and Magic Underwear
    Posts
    5,949
    Agree, I like their ethic and generally their product too. Sounds like a REALLY far fetched business plan though. A chain of stores that exclusively sell one brand of mountain bike/lifestyle apparel? This is a very niche brand catering to a niche demographic. A single store that sells EVERY brand of bike apparel likely wouldn't survive without bikes, hardware, and service. It's certainly too bad but I don't know how anyone would think that would succeed.
    There's nothing better than sliding down snow... flying through the air.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    base of the Bush
    Posts
    10,977
    Stupid venture funders, Sombria is not Oakley.
    www.apriliaforum.com

    "If the road You followed brought you to this,of what use was the road"?

    "I have no idea what I am talking about but would be happy to share my biased opinions as fact on the matter. "
    Ottime

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Land of Brine Shrimp and Magic Underwear
    Posts
    5,949
    Exactly, or even Pearlizumi, both of which have a much wider consumer base.

    I would have liked to see this succeed but you cant just up and decide, "OK, we're gonna be huge!", the consumer decides that. You have to slowly build momentum while keeping production in line with demand.
    There's nothing better than sliding down snow... flying through the air.

  7. #7
    Hugh Conway Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by beaterdit View Post
    I would have liked to see this succeed but you cant just up and decide, "OK, we're gonna be huge!", the consumer decides that. You have to slowly build momentum while keeping production in line with demand.
    Isn't that pretty much what under-armour did? Decide to be huge?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Agrestic
    Posts
    4,821
    Quote Originally Posted by Hugh Conway View Post
    Isn't that pretty much what under-armour did? Decide to be huge?
    Yep. The Ravens went the Superbowl the year they gave them stuff. IIRC.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Land of Brine Shrimp and Magic Underwear
    Posts
    5,949
    Quote Originally Posted by Hugh Conway View Post
    Isn't that pretty much what under-armour did? Decide to be huge?
    I guess? Not too familiar with the brand except that I always thought they were a joke and then they started showing up in stores Walmart and Target. Or maybe that's how they started? I imagine that had a lot to do with their rapid expansion.

    Either way, they've got a much broader consumer base.

    The other thing I noticed about Sombrio was the super pimped out semi-trailer RV party rig and pumptrack hauler. The thing is awesome for sure and the support of local events and the portable pumptrack were awesome too. It definitely got the brand good will and exposure but it had to have cost at least a couple hundred thousand bucks. I just don't think it was a very good use of capital for what was essentially a small startup. It made me think (incorrectly?) that they must be trust funders with incredibly deep pockets and it didn't really matter if the brand was financially solvent. Nothing wrong with that unless, as it turned out, you're actually leveraged to the hilt with investor money. In this case though, it seems the investors were the ones behind the whole financial overextension and the original players could actually be the 'victims' here.

    I can see how it would be hard not to get caught up in the fantasy though. You and your bros start a unique, 'core' little company with plans of 'keeping it real' and catering to your unique little niche, and maybe making a little money in the process. You support the local scene and events and it's all cool. Then the you pop up on the venture capitalist' radar, or maybe you sought them out yourselves when you saw more potential. They tell you you could be the next Oakley, and conjure up the exclusive retailing plan and a never ending publicity tour on the party rig, and you ride off into the sunset while the cash rolls in. What's not to like about that?

    It could have worked. The brand had a certain boutique nature that has often been used to create disproportional demand and ultimately, success. I just think it was a long shot and it wasn't hard to see it could really go sideways in a hurry.

    Still, too bad. Like I said, I like their stuff and their ethic. They did some good things in the Utah scene and throughout the west, and supported events that I've participated in. They were really living the dream there for a minute and I'll be the first to admit I was very jealous of the party rig. That thing is awesome.

    Disclaimer: I am not an MBA, I'm a professional butt wiper, and this is 99% speculation. With that in mind, take it for what you will.
    There's nothing better than sliding down snow... flying through the air.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Rossland BC
    Posts
    1,091
    I had the same thoughts when that pimped out rig and pump track showed up in my little town (Rossland).

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    North Vancouver
    Posts
    593
    I remember when www.sitka.ca opened up the little retail store in North Van and shared the space with the local skate shop on Lonsdale. My first thought was, wow this is a really cool brand but a huge and bold move to only carry it's own in a retail store. Back then they only sold hoodies. For what it's worth, I can't even remember the skate/snowboard shops name and it is no longer in business. Sitka seems to be doing well the last time I walked by the store in Vancouver. I am not too familiar with the Sombrio line and their operation only that I do know where their head office is here and a buddy of mine does some design work for them. I guess it could have worked. Some make it, some don't. Good luck to them regardless.
    What if "Alternative" energy wasn't so alternative ?

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •