Two Cents: Quiksilver Isn’t Dead; It’s just Having a Coronary

By on September 9, 2015 in Awesome, Culture, Fails, Surfing with 0 Comments

quiksilver_wipeout

Quiksilver may be wiping out, but it isn’t drowning…yet.

Quiksilver is basically a 40-year-old man who spent his 20s and 30s partying too hard and eating fast food causing him to suffer a pre-mature heart attack, which then resulted in a traumatic ride to the hospital, a jolt from the defibrillator and a stern doctor’s warning to “stop acting like a teenager!” That’s really what this Ch. 11 Bankruptcy is all about.

The Australian, European and Asian branches of Quik are reportedly doing fine; and its Roxy and DC brands are strong. It’s actually just the US operation of Quiksilver that’s fat, sick and nearly dead.

A victim of its own gluttony, Quiksilver USA’s acquisition and sale of Rossignol in 2005-2008 and its resulting ~$150 million loss, combined with declining interest in surf apparel in the States has been at the core of Quik USA’s demise. The loss of Kelly Slater as its main marketing tool didn’t help either.

Quik needs to shut down its pretentious retail stores in places like SoHO and Universal City Walk and focus on the surf and watersports lifestyles (think surf, SUP, wake, beaches and bikinis), which helped grow the brand from the beginning. Who gives a shit if the kid in Omaha, Nebraska, who may have wandered into a Pac Sun in 2007 to buy a Quiksilver shirt is instead now wandering into a UFC store and buying an Affliction t-shirt. That kid never surfed anyway.

Quik needs to downsize, focus on its core audience and remember what they’re good at and they’ll be fine. Drink your OJ, put on a sweater, lay off the booze and cigarettes and you’ll be fine. There are plenty of companies that have filed Chapter 11 and rebounded splendidly — do United Airlines or GM ring a bell?

With $100 billion Oakmont Capital now taking over management, chances are they’ll figure out a way to take the infusion of $175 million and determine a sustainable path to viability for Quiksilver.

The alternative, of course, is that they’ll ignore the doctor’s orders, go on a bender, avoid the gym and succumb to brand cirrhosis at Target, Wal-Mart and Kohls next to other “once great” action sports brands like Airwalk, Mossimo and OP.

That’s our two cents.

 

 

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