Arrogance = your opportunity

I bought this reasonably cool pair of board shorts for surfing this summer.


They cost me a whopping $80. Which is what I call ‘insult pricing’. It’s a pretty simple equation actually. The key players in the surfwear industry (Billabong, Quiksilver and Ripcurl) charge these prices because they can. They don’t have any ‘credible competitors’ in this board short subsegment of clothing.

In recent years surf brands have been hit by many competitors in other areas of the market which they used to ‘own’. Especially in t-shirts, from the myriad of streetwear companies, to the uber cool on-line players like Neighborhoodies and Threadless. Interestingly the shorts in this photo would cost >$5 to make. There is significant margin in the product. Such high margins often begets competitive entry into the market place.

The arrogance of said surf brands has invented an opportunity for a nimble entrepreneur to steal part of this market. And the way to do it is exactly the way Threadless have. Go online and build a community to design the uber cool boardshorts / shorts and sell them globally at a fair price. In fact, surf wear is so clichéd and over branded these days that I avoid wearing it. Most of the designs are very rank and have really lost their edge. I only use surf brands for surf equipment. The only reason I bought the pair in the photo is ‘lack of options’.

If anyone knows some one already doing it – let me know
If anyone wants to do it – let me know as well. I think it’s worth ‘investing in’.


Are you into it?

I’m sure there are examples of people who’ve been successful by simply being good at what they do. But there are more examples of world beaters who are ‘into’ what they do.

I’m into this blog. I love writing it. I did it with as much enthusiasm when 10 people read it each month as I do now when more than 20,000 do.

Some of my favourite entrepreneurs are really into what they do.

Branson loves music & flying.

Trump loves real estate & the deal

Steve Jobs is really into design & aesthetics

Lindsay Fox loves trucks and cars (he even has ‘truck driver’ as the title on his business card!)

Doug Warbrick loves surfing….

Doug and his surfing partner Brian started Ripcurl, the surfing company. They started making surfboards in the late 1960’s and shortly after made some the first surfing wetsuits the world has seen. In fact their first wetsuit was made from a rubber carpet underlay they pulled up from a floor with an old pre world war 2 sewing machine – great bootstrapping. He made the wetsuits so he could endure the harsh Victorian winter and enjoy the best waves of the year down there.

They just kept making really good surfing equipment. Which they also sold, 40 years on Ripcurl is now one of the three dominant companies in the Industry, valued at well over $500 million.

Ripcurl founders & store circa 1970, followed by curent retail outlet

Are you into your job, business or startup, or just passing the days?

The best innovations no less ‘ entrepreneurial success’ comes from people who are really into what they do.