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Old 02-10-2009, 10:41 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default cracks in the big "b" empire?

Lets face it.. in todays fickle world its almost impossible to stay number one forever. Has the end of the Burton empire begun? A few recent happenings... Burton has let go a few older guys like DCP and Demarchi. Now yes they are deep in game and not ground breakers anymore but burton has a tendency to look out for its older guys so this move is a little surprising. Also UnInc has all but dismantled with Solberg and Demarchi dropped and Gigi being listed now as a Volcom rider. Basically that leaves Kevin Pearce for UnInc. Today I read that Burton is totally closing shop on the Forum/FourSquare/Specialblend operations in Socal and moving them to Vermont but not taking many of the higher ups with them.

I dont ever think Burton will go away thats really unfathomable but look at where they are now. Basically half pipe and a bit of Alaska. Hell if it werent for Jeremy Jones ( whos not really young either) theyd really be out in the cold as far as "core" riders go. They do a have a few young bucks but not really the huge stable that they used to as far as ams and up and coming pros.

You can see this all the time in business. Big leader A is number one so they get conservative and complacent which allow for newer more forward thinking companies to come in and knock them out. ( Think Kmart vs Walmart ) Snowboarding is really just now at the 25 year mark getting to where small companies can compete on a level playing field with the giants and if you are number one thats not good news lol.

Any opinions ?
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Old 02-10-2009, 10:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The Jeremy Jones you are thinking of does not ride for Burton, he rides for Rossi.

UnInc was an experiment that did well but was too limited in its exposure thats why it is getting smaller, not because the Pros left.
DCP and Demarchi left Burton to start their own line, not because Burton canned them. Their contracts were up and they decided to leave. Watch out for their new line called "Yes We Can"
Forum is closing up shop in SoCal because thats what Burton had planned since they bought the line. They didn't want the factory, they just wanted the name. It's just business.

I don't think anyone will topple Burton, they haven't in 25 years and they won't in the next 25 years. It's a solid go-to brand for the weekend warriors and vacation people and will always remain that way.
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Old 02-10-2009, 11:10 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I never liked Burton, but they're not going anywhere.
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Old 02-10-2009, 11:12 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by bakesale View Post
The Jeremy Jones you are thinking of does not ride for Burton, he rides for Rossi.
Burton's Jones is only one year younger than Rossi's Jones.

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Old 02-10-2009, 11:19 PM   #5 (permalink)
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lol i know the difference between jibber jones and big mtn jones .. im talking of jibber jones as the core rider i.e. the trendy scene rails back country booters etc . i know of the new project from them called yes, but dcp was let go from burton along with roman they didnt walk away.

i think your opinion of burton is exactly the kind that topples companies from the inside. if they are sitting there thinking "no one can touch us" then they are doomed. really name any company other than nike that has been and industry leader for three four or five decades. its just the nature of the beast as far as business goes. the more burton saturates the " non core" market i think the more it will alienate the people that made them number one. im talking purely from a business perspective here. im in no way trying to even start the burton sucks vs burton rules argument lol.

another thing that strikes me recently with burton is their failed attempts at technological progression. specifically im thinking of the edgeless dominants (failed) the est bindings ( a meh reception ) and now the "spoon" technology. when i saw that spoon tech i was like wtf!?! used to be burton was the one leading the pack in technology. if reverse camber was made 8 years ago it would have been on a burton board. to me failures like this indicate that they are less in tune with their market.
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Old 02-11-2009, 10:51 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Burton seems to be over-priced as well
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Old 02-11-2009, 11:21 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Its just industry cycles, currently lib is pushing the tech and in a few years it will be somebody else.
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Old 02-11-2009, 01:13 PM   #8 (permalink)
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so whats happening with forum etc? They are just moving operations?
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Old 02-11-2009, 01:49 PM   #9 (permalink)
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And Buick dropped Tiger Woods' sponsorship this year also but will probably survive.

I think every company in America is trying to do with less advertising and sponsorship with the world economic downturn.

It's not the sponsorships that make the company numero uno. It's buyers shelling out the money so I think in the long term, Burton's pricing scheme is actually what may let other companies in the industry catch up to the sales numbers B has sustained so far.

As far as B being 'complacent and conservative'? In the last few offerings they have tried to introduce, EST and ICS binding/board tech. Next year they are touting rocker I wouldn't say they are complacent. They always seem to try and spark an interest with their new products.
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Old 02-11-2009, 02:17 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Burton is touting rocker boards 2 years too late. Lib Tech and others were light years ahead of them in this market and have done a good job cornering it. ICS is not much of anything. Just a way for Burton to have another patent to charge licensing fees to other companies to make products compatible with their line. Overall, Burton's "technology" improvements have been smoke and mirrors more than a real improvement in tech. They've been doing this for years, but there wasn't really anyone out their pushing true innovation so they got away with it. Now Lib Tech has been pushing some real innovations and has been growing by leaps and bounds. Burton is still trying to the same schtick and it's not doing them any favors. Look for the spinners to return to their boards as a new "tech" for next year. Look it's shiny!
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