Ninthward with Full Line of 07/08 Skis at ISPO: Ready in Riot Gear to Stop PhotosBy Rocky Thompson on February 7th, 2007
Employees from only two booths have stopped me from taking pictures at ISPO despite the tradeshow’s strict no-camera policy. One was at Nike’s ‘Considered’ line (who cares, right?), but the other people who aggressively stopped me was the company I was shocked to see with a functional booth–the LA-based ski company Ninthward.
If you’re not familiar with Ninthward, then you probably don’t waste much time watching skiing on TV. Their team’s been gathering impressive wins on signature model skis for a couple years, but Ninthward has yet to deliver a pair of skis to the public. For the last two years Backcountry.com has met with Ninthward at SIA and placed orders, but their hyped skis never arrived.
At SIA this year, Ninthward’s booth was a tiny closed off box with only a small sign and a piece of cardboard taped over the top corner so no one would be able to stick a camera up there to take a picture. Inside they had a poster of Rory Silva passed out on a couch with the real Rory Silva passed out on the floor beneath it. In the cooler next to his feet someone’s cell phone floated along with a bunch of empty cans. They didn’t have anything to show for skis, and the story was that they’d cut the bases of all their 2006/07 skis upside-down, so they had 800 skis that said Ninthward backwards–another year with no delivery. Either it was a clever lie to make a bunch of businessmen look like idiot stoners, or the company really can’t do a single thing right.
So why were they at ISPO with a full set of skis to show, but went to SIA empty handed? It looks like they might want to continue building hype by becoming a Euro ski brand before they begin selling in the US. The guy who owns this company must be sitting on a fat trust fund or have some investors who really trust him. It has to be tough to make skis for three years without actually selling any.