Starting a company during a recession, crazy! Getting told no from everyone, painful! Chasing after your dreams, PRICELESS............
HAHA, very nice line. Actually, statistics showed people trailed off in skiing last year, but snowboarding was up, even though it was the warmest winter I believe in history they said? Coming from a racing background, snowboarding is cheap, very cheap. Can't compare it to a competitive level in anything serious racing related with the money you burn left and right. I compare it to racing since in any given time the same people within a selective group have tried it alike to the same amount that have tried snowboarding.
You pay around at your peak of skill 6-700 for a board avg, 200 avg for bindings, 200 for boots, wearing the same clothes for 3 years or more till they wear out and the same board depending on your style will last you avg a year or less if you're a pro, and longer if you're just into it. The majority of people will use a board 2-3 years, you don't need a new board every year unless you're a pro or seriously treating it like a profession thrashing the board all year long. In other words, it's a cheap alternative for an active sport with adrenaline rush contrast to most of the rest out there and still has people getting on it every year recession or not. So when they say there is less of the pie available for other low end companies to get in on it, I'd have to say that pie is mainly the average boarder population.
Most companies do not pitch to only pros or only beginners, but the average boarder and then market it to say it's great for beginning or for pro riding. The population is not dwindling, no one I've ever heard of gets out of boarding because of cost. However, they will cut down on their expense like buying a top of the line board or any other gear and instead go for a well rep'd company or established middle of the line board or gear. This is where having a good board and props from customers to recommend you will come into place. Customer satisfaction and service is everything. If you can get local support and have a good product, for the majority of the population of average riders, top name brands cannot compete with this unless they have a local store because you are there for servicing and support whereas they are not and resort to mass advertising, marketing, and online sales.