Massive restructuring at surf apparel mega-brand Quiksilver has resulted in cutting athletes, marketing and design staff, along with entire categories, including Quiksilver's skate program. In addition, the changes are also having an impact on the brands that fall under the Quiksilver Inc. umbrella, including Roxy and DC Shoes.
Quiksilver announced last week that they would be refining their focus on their core competency of surf by terminating their Women's and Girl's divisions. In addition they're cutting down the size of their snow and surf teams to narrow the focus onto specific athletes. With the exception of legendary pro skater Tony Hawk, according to Transworld Business, Quiksilver is releasing all their contracted and flow skaters.
In an interview with website Shop-Eat-Surf.com, Quiksilver's new CEO Andy Mooney explained, "We are still every bit as focused on athletes for all three brands going forward. What we are doing is narrowing our focus. We have tremendous athletes and they should be household names beyond the core universe and they aren't because nobody in the industry has the money to activate them. It's not that I am trying to save money and put it in my back pocket. I plan to reallocate the money and to spend more money on the athletes we have."
For more than two decades Quicksilver has maintained a world-class skate team and support staff of designers, marketers and event planners to build their presence in skateboarding. Skate had previously been an important category to help grow the brand, especially as Quiksilver opened its' own retail shops and attempted to enter the footwear market with a Reese Forbes signature skate shoe.
Mooney also explained that Quiksilver was releasing their skate team, which included professional skateboarders Danny Garcia, Riley Hawk, Austyn Gillette, Justin Brock, Jake Donnelly, David Clark, and long-term team riders Reese Forbes and Omar Hassan. The sacking of the Quiksilver skate program has far reaching effects, resulting in the dismissal of their European skate team led by Javier Mendizabal and their Canadian riders including Jordan Hoffart. Leaving Tony Hawk and his Hawk Clothing line as the lone fragment of skateboarding at Quiksilver.
Is the elimination of Quiksilver's skate program the nail in the coffin for the numerous events they've sponsored in the past? Will the on-again off-again Quiksilver Bowlrider's Competition, which hosted some of the most amazing moments in skate history, (including John Cardiel's winning run on a broken board in Marseille, France in 2000), be no more?
With Quiksilver firmly staking their claim in surf, their subsidiary brand DC Shoes has let go of their surf and BMX teams to refocus the brand on its' foundation of skateboarding.
Calls to Quiksilver for comment were not returned. For now, Door 33, their indoor private skateboarding facility, which has played host to numerous events and epic video clips, is shut down and is officially the loneliest skatepark in Huntington Beach, Calif.