Truckee ski-snowboard company launches Kickstarter campaign to expand
March 20, 2017
TRUCKEE, Calif. — A women-owned and operated company that specializes in performance skis and snowboards for women is now expanding its line of equipment.
The Truckee-based startup company Coalition Snow launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund its first YOUth line of skis and snowboards earlier this month.
"It just seemed like a natural evolution for us to offer smaller skis and boards for younger girls," Jen Gurecki, co-founder and CEO of Coalition Snow said in a phone interview.
The company's goal is to raise $50,000 in 30 days in order to be able to manufacture the new line of skis and boards before the next season.
Gurecki explained that in the ski industry, companies press their equipment during the summer months so that it is ready to go by the next ski season. At the time this article was written, the company was more than $23,000 toward its goal with 22 days left of the Kickstarter.
Launching the YOUth line is also an opportunity to show young girls that there is a place for them in the sport and in the industry.
"In the snow sports industry, young women don't have a lot of role models," said Gurecki. It was important for the company's new line to using high-quality material for the skis and snowboards.
The decision to expand their line was based on feedback from Coaltion's customers and employees.
"We decided to expand our line because people have been asking us to," Gurecki said. "That is something that defines us as a company that we are very responsive to our community."
The Truckee startup was founded in 2014 by a team of women from Lake Tahoe. They saw a need in the market for premium women's skis and snowboards that were designed specifically for women by women.
"Women have never had a lot of choices," Gurecki said. "Women just deserve to have more options."
According to Gurecki, Coalition Snow has a core team of six people; however, there are many other people who dedicate their time to the success of the company.
Coalition Snow currently has more than 30 brand ambassadors across the world with a presence on four continents. Their ambassadors are women who ski or snowboard 60 or more days a year who promote the Coalition Snow brand.
While the company is still in its infancy, its team has seen a lot of growth within the past year.
"Things really started to take off for us specifically this past year," Gurecki said.
The company's gear is now sold in select REI stores; they have continued to build their athlete and ambassador brand, increased sales and won several awards for their gear.
As with starting any new business, there were many challenges along the way.
"I don't think that people took us seriously," Gurecki said about when they were first starting the company. "I don't think that people think that anymore."
She explained that one of the challenges they continue to face is that people tend to think of Coalition Snow as a cause or a charity rather than entrepreneurs who are building a global company.
"By being a part of Coalition, you are helping female entrepreneurs grow a company," Gurecki said.
The company is working to continue to expand its distribution in the coming year and Gurecki said she is excited about the future of Coalition Snow.
"We have done a lot in three years," Gurecki said. "(In terms of) the awards, the distribution and building this team. We are definitely quite excited about what is next for us."