September 12, 2023 – Spinera, one of the largest watersports brands in Europe, is excited to announce its launch in the U.S. market with its Paddlesports, Watersports, & Commercial inflatable product lines.
Inflatable kayak and SUP products will be available to paddlesports specialty dealers for preseason orders for the 2024 season.
The U.S.-based team draws from a depth of industry knowledge.
Mike Mowrey, CEO of Tsunami Sales & Marketing, comes to the team with over 25 years of industry—and inflatable-specific—experience and will lead U.S. Paddlesports sales. Mike was tapped for his depth of product knowledge, industry knowledge and sales acumen.
“I see great opportunity in this maturing category,” Mowrey said. “We’ve put together a great team with solid experience. We intend to take hard lessons from the industry to build a better brand.”
The team realizes the market is recovering from post-COVID disruptions and consumer behavior changes. Even with these headwinds, there is substantial opportunity with an established, enthusiastic consumer base. There are fundamental takeaways from some of the mistakes brands have made in this category which the team looks to integrate in its go-to-market strategy.
“Many competitors lost sight of the collaborative brand-dealer partnership necessary for long-term healthy growth in the market,” Mowrey added.
Spinera will position itself in the mid/high tier of product quality, and feature sets will offer a compelling value proposition to customers and retail partners. Purpose-built design inputs from experts with decades of expertise in inflatable kayak/SUP categories are a major initiative as the product line comes to market.
“We are not positioning Spinera to compete against the inexpensive, mass-market, and factory-direct brands,” Mowrey continued.
Start-up Creativity and Agility Backed by Spinera’s Resources
The U.S. team will be empowered to pursue best practices specific to the U.S. market and consumer while drawing from Spinera’s product, sourcing and marketing teams, as well as trusted factory relationships. This will allow Spinera USA to accelerate its presence in the U.S.
“Unlike many start-ups in the outdoor industry, we don’t have to sacrifice due to budget or team resource constraints. This allows the team to focus on the best ways to grow the brand in a healthy and sustainable way—with a focus on our paddlesports specialty partners,” Mowrey said.
2024 and Beyond
Richard Ems, founder of Spinera, added, “We fully understand that the market is working through inventory challenges and they will continue through 2024. We see opportunity in the disruption and are strategizing through 2024 to an improving market in 2025 and beyond. We are committing to the U.S. over the long haul.”
Richard Ems has roots in watersports, beginning as a dealer in Germany and developing into a major distributor and brand owner.
“I attend over 20 international trade events a year. It is important for me to have my finger on the pulse of the industry,” said Ems. “The U.S. market has excellent potential and the team in Germany is excited to support the U.S. team.”
Partnership with The Crystal Kayak Company
Spinera has collaborated with The Crystal Kayak Company, leveraging Crystal Kayak’s expertise in e-commerce and fulfillment on this venture. The integration of the companies will allow Spinera to be distributed without the typical growing pains around fulfillment of product to dealers. Knowledge of how to build all channels while minimizing distribution leakage and other digital marketplace-related headaches will be crucial to growing partnerships.
“Ensuring a fair and healthy market for all partners is a focus for the team,” Brian, founding partner, added.
Not Just Inflatable Kayaks & SUPs
While Spinera has invested significant resources in paddlesports, the brand also has mature, expansive watersports—including towables—and professional product lines—including yacht and commercial. Many of the product innovations in inflatables can be leveraged across product lines to improve designs, fabrication and feature sets.
“The halo effect of these product lines is a distinct Spinera advantage,” Ems said.
Look for updates on watersports inflatables and commercial inflatables in the U.S. market soon.
Spinera was founded in 2007 as a subsidiary of Point of Sports GmbH by founder Richard Ems. The Spinera team has over 20 years of know-how in paddlesports, watersports and commercial inflatable categories servicing the EU & APAC markets. Spinera products are designed and tested at its headquarters in Austria.
Spinera’s 2024 wholesale prebook program launches on September 12.