It would be faster to grow KUIU reselling to retailers. Do you know why KUIU is a whole sale direct business? Why do I not sell KUIU to retailers like every other brand?
Before starting Sitka, I always asked why hunting gear is decades behind Mountaineering Gear? I believe Mountain Hunting equipment should be leading with innovation, not following. Mountain Hunters and Guides rely on gear in the most demanding conditions on the planet. We hunt despite the weather and many times because of the weather. There is no lodge at the top of the mountain, weather does not cancel our trips, we don’t stay in the tent, we go anyways.
I firmly believe, because of the demanding conditions, Mountain Hunter’s need uncompromised products made with the finest materials and manufacturing. Products designed without price targets so there are no limitations on what goes into our products.
In building Sitka, I realized how much the retail model strangles innovation. With the growth of big box retail price has become too important to drive sales. Price targets for the retailer cripple innovation. No Toray, no The Merino Company, no Icon Carbon Fiber and no Super Down. What you find are cheap knock off fabrics and low quality manufacturing and poor performing products.
KUIU was created so I can design and build products with as much reliability as money can buy.
Because of this I have nothing to hide what goes into KUIU products. KUIU is the only brand that is totally transparent in sharing our world-class suppliers; Toray, The Merino Company, Pittards Leather, Cordura, Polish Down, YKK, Duraflex, Polartec, 3M and Bemis. I want you to have confidence in KUIU products. Because KUIU products are made without price targets for retailers, 12 ounce Carbon Fiber pack frames and the most advanced layering system ever created are the results of this model.
Fortunately, the Internet has forever changed retail and we no longer have to rely on a sales person to tell us what to buy for a once in a lifetime sheep hunt. The Internet has given us the power to search and research products and brands, read unbiased reviews, post reviews, post complaints and become experts in the gear we buy.
Because of the internet today’s consumer knows more about the products and has changed retail into a self-service business. Why should you pay a 50% retail mark-up if you are the expert? Why pay a retailer an extra $150 for a pair of Attack Pants to hang them on the rack when you know all the advantages to Toray Primeflex Stretch Woven fabric in the pant?
This wholesale direct business model is what allows KUIU to produce the highest quality gear on the planet. It is what will allow KUIU to continue to lead with cutting edge innovations and push our market further than ever before. In my opinion we all win this way.