If you’re a powersports dealer who’s been licking his chops over all those gear bags being sold by the big box stores in your neighborhood, you might be able to stop worrying and start ringing the cash register. At least that’s what Mike Pratt, founder of Ogio International, thinks.
Ogio, based in Bluffdale, Utah, is one of the world’s fastest growing producers of top quality sports-gear bags. It’s ranked Number 473 on Inc. magazine’s list of 500 fastest growing companies for 2002. Five years ago, the company posted sales of $8 million, but sales for 2002 are expected to go over $50 million. To generate those dollar sales, the company will sell well over 1 million duffels, back packs, golf bags and other sports-gear bags.
A major reason for the company’s success is its marketing strategy: Find product categories that can be upgraded with Ogio’s multi-patented products. Then, put together ventures with industry leaders in that segment.
Take the golf market. Ogio will produce more than 500,000 golf bags in 2002, some of them carrying its own brand, but most carrying the Callaway name.
As Inc. magazine says in its 500 fastest growing company listing this year: “Companies like Ogio are the Ginger Rogers to the big company’s Fred Astaire. Ogio makes Callaway look better. The smaller company shares its technology with Callaway and even develops patents specifically for Callaway’s use in certain products while retaining ownership of the patents for its own future application.”
The Callaway partnership isn’t unique. Ogio also works with such companies as McDonald’s and Microsoft. “We’ve always been known for selling quality products,” said Pratt during a recent interview with Powersports Business magazine. “We’re a high end company that sells premium items that feature plenty of innovations.”
So what do golf bags and Microsoft have to do with powersports equipment? Plenty, if Pratt’s plans work out. Ogio will be at the Dealer Expo next February in Booth 6027 in Zone 14 and it’ll be pushing a new line of MX sport-bags, everything from backpacks to duffels to helmet bags.
Perhaps one of the most innovative products designed for off-road riders is a backpack designed like a vest. “It’s a commando-style vest that combines the functionality of a backpack with a design that looks like a fishing vest,” says Pratt. “The weight is distributed around the body like a flight vest.” The product is so new it doesn’t yet have a model number or pricing.
“Our bags will have more value for the powersports dealer,” says Pratt. “We can use our economies of scale to build in features that competitors don’t have. And bags are our business; they’re at the front of our catalog. They’re not an accessory, like they are with some others.”
The bags will be sold direct to dealers by an independent sales force, the same approach that Ogio has used in other industries. The approach seems to work. Ogio has built a network of 6,500 U.S. retailers since it began business in 1987. Margins for powersports dealers will be 40%. The products will be supported by a series of joint promotions with companies such as Alpine and KTM at dealer locations next year, Pratt said. Dealers seeking additional information can contact Ogio at 800/922-1944 or visit its web site at www.ogio.com.
No stranger to powersports industry
Ogio’s MX product line was developed with the help of MX racers who tested products on the company’s private MX track next to its 90,000 sq. ft. distribution center near Salt Lake City.
“Quality. Attention to detail. Innovation. That’s how you describe Ogio, says Pratt. “We looked at the motocross industry and thought it was a no brainer. Nobody out there was making products with our quality.”
That could be good for powersports dealers.
Copyright 2003 Powersports Business