Retail Buyers Guide: Longboards 2019
Brand: Jucker Hawaii
Interviewee: Mike Jucker Co-Founder and Brand manager
What is the current state of the European longboard market, also compared to the US?
We are still in a low state in Europe in my opinion. People still buy Longboards, and we see many of our existing riders adding a 2nd board to their quiver. However, we are far from 2015 and it does not look like its coming back anytime soon. The US is a bit of a different market, the country is so big and different regions have their own trends and market mechanisms. I see in my case here on Maui, that many tourists come with their teenagers to buy a board to get around the college campus and then want to buy it directly from us here on Maui. The market in the US is just that much bigger. However, I don’t think there is much of a Longboard Hype going on in the US either.
How are you segmenting your longboards collection?
We still have all the classic cruiser range as well as freeride shapes. We did add some mini cruisers and also added Skateboarding good as well to our range.
What general trends are you noticing?
Right now its hard to say, I don’t see any kind of new trend emerging fast. Last year some people hyped the whole” Skate-Surf Carving Thing”, but it never really took off, at least not in Germany. I hear Brazil is doing pretty well with Skatesurf Type boards.
How is participation in Europe developing? Core VS casual? And how about female riders?
It is hard to get a complete grip on that, but I would say it is still the casual rider that carries the market. Here in the US I definitely see an influx of female riders, particularly since surfing has attracted so many female riders in the past years. Girls are so often underrated but I think this is slowly changing now. The core market has always been its’ own animal and still seems very fragmented.
What is your collection theme and which stories are you important for SS2019?
As of right now we keep our collection tight and continue to focus on our best sellers and diversification. We are sticking to our message as we always have: Enjoy Your Ride! Be Pono – Do what’s right!
What are your main stories in terms of shapes and materials for SS 2019?
We just launched our own longboard truck which we will continue to push. Other than that, we will stick with the shapes and materials that done us well over the last few years. Natural looks and bamboo optics.
Which technical features are you the most proud of?
Right now it is our truck, we put lots of work and time into it and we really got a sense of accomplishment once we had the final product.
Which wheels, trucks and accessories do retailers need to keep on their radar next season?
As a shop operator myself, I see two types of wheels selling fast: Cruiser Skatewheels and Skatepark wheels, these are my best selling wheels apart from complete longboards.
Please name and describe your 3 highlight pieces and items that retailers should definitely order.
One thing I can almost guarantee: If you carry our Makaha Longboard Collection it will sell. We have been selling this board for over 4 years and it is immensely popular. Same thing with our Hoku Series, they are very popular. Here on Maui people also love our Pau Hana Cruiser surf style Mini Cruiser.