Formed by NOMAD Skateboards founder Ivan Moreno, AKAW! is a new surfskate brand on the market. Launching with an MO of freshness, irreverence, openness, and fun Ivan’s looking for distributors to help grow the brand to its full potential of concrete wave surfing.
Why did you decide to launch AKAW!?
I have always been connected to “glisse sports”, skating and snowboarding since I was a kid… I have always followed my passions. I started NOMAD skateboards 22 years ago, and recently I was in a moment when I needed to refuel those passions again and look for new challenges. Skateboarding is living a very challenging moment: a very atomized market, a lot of concurrence, and lifestyle-wise also heading more and more into a “competition” landscape with the Olympics. I wanted to look for something more rooted, like when skateboarding started back in the 70s… JUST FOR FUN! Surfskate answers this perfectly, toys of good just for cruising, shredding and having fun… so I decided to take the wave!
And the brand name?
A brand needs to connect with the concept, with its experience, so our research was focused on branding that was able to share the energy provided by the product itself. AKAW! is a very old school surfer expression, is what surfers shout out when they spot a perfect wave, AKAW! Our aim is to provide the best feeling over concrete waves, so it was the perfect match.
Who are the people behind the brand?
Ivan Moreno, 45 year old, passionate father and skater, with 22 years of experience within the action sports industry. Small project but big ambitions…
How will you push AKAW! in Europe?
I have been building relationships for almost three decades within the skate scene, a big part of the NOMAD distribution network will open up their wings for this new project, but also being surfskate, it will allow us to open up and connect with other people outside the “core” skateboard industry. That´s something that’s also interesting for us, connect more with the surfing and snowboard industry and look for new opportunities together, so OPEN CALL… DISTRIBUTORS WANTED!!!!
How is the surfskate market looking?
Surfskate is definitely a trend, still in a very early stage, but also very open to all people and ages. Surfskates are wider than a regular cruiser or longboard and give a feeling close to surfing waves whilst providing a high level of adrenaline. I believe it has a big potential to keep evolving and the current market is definitely growing at a very progressive rate. In terms of its similarity with skateboarding, there are not so many consolidated brands, so we believe that we have the experience and resources to position AKAW! as a leader in the industry.
Why should retailers stock your brand?
AKAW! is fresh, irreverent, open and fun. I believe we come with a very complementary offer vs our competitors, we don´t want to push anyone out of the market, just host those #akawexplorers who are looking for a brand with a different point of view. Product-wise, we are taking a lot of care in the small details, profiting from over two decades of expertise in skateboard manufacturing, and we will in the near future introduce new technologies so we can improve our decks, wheels and trucks. Product- and image-wise, we are on point, margins are slightly over benchmark, so let´s now let retailers and distributors speak for themselves!
Any new technology in the pipeline?
One key person on this project is our industrial engineer. We are working with different materials to include within our range of boards and grip tapes, and also a huge range of wheel hardnesses to respond to the most demanding needs. Due to registration matters / schedules, we haven´t had the chance to deliver into the market all our new patented technologies yet. We have a very responsive truck in our first run that we have worked on for over a year, but very soon we will release a truck model which will redefine the surfskate experience…
How do retailers/agents/distros connect with you guys?[email protected]. At this moment we are building their distribution and sales rep network, so looking forward for any inquiries, it´s time to conquer the concrete waves!