Atomic is an Austrian company that has been manufacturing skis, and manufacturing them well, for over 50 years. Since Atomic only makes skis and not snowboards, the brand can truly focus on the art of their craft.
Craig Peterson, seasoned Ski Hardgoods buyer for Christy Sports, weighs in on Atomic and the brand’s value to Christy Sports. “Our relationship with Atomic is very good. I’ve been to the factory in Austria and most of the skis are made right there, in a beautiful valley with a ski area just 20 minutes away.”
Craig talks about how Atomic is authentic and innovative, with new models and ground-breaking materials to make the skis lighter and more stable. The brand offers a good balance between quality men’s skis and women’s skis.
We had the chance to sit down with Atomic’s Mike Macquarrie, or MAQ as many in the industry call him, to talk about the brand and their relationship with Christy Sports.
Mike “MAQ” Macquarrie on Atomic & Christy Sports:
- What attracted Atomic to Christy Sports?
My experience with Christy Sports has always been amazing. I have a great relationship with the employees, from corporate to the shop guys and girls. Christy Sports has the same feel as a mom and pop shop even with over 40 locations. The kids on the floor are passionate; the managers are involved, as a small entity would be. I could walk across the street to a mom and pop ski shop and wouldn’t even feel I was treated with as much value as at Christy Sports. The company is very hands on and helpful but with many locations.
- What benefit did Atomic observe through partnering with Christy Sports?
Ten years ago when walked into Christy Sports and then to a big competitor, I observed that both have buying power but Christy Sports has a hands-on team atmosphere like walking into a small retailer. With expansion there is still that mom and pop feel which is super important in this world. Employees truly care about steering the customer to the right product for their needs. The shop employees are very inviting and knowledgeable, and the shop layouts are great. I can confidently try new product in the stores and the shop employees can embrace it and sell it to the customers who will benefit from it.
- What, uniquely, does Atomic offer to their fans and retailers?
Atomic is rich in heritage and the Austrian culture has been heavy into skiing since the beginning of the sport. We ARE skiing- the brand is passionate and the brand’s employees are all passionate skiers. Since we are authentic just to the sport of skiing we can touch every type of skier. Atomic pushes the envelope on making the sport better with new design and is not afraid to bring something to market that might be edgy.
- What, in your eyes, does Christy Sports offer to their customers that other retailers do not?
People price shop and chances are they can find a good deal anywhere. When you move beyond price what’s the next important thing when shopping for outdoor products? How do you maintain your customer base? Christy Sports employees do a really good job from assisting with clothing to fitting a boot, it’s the sales interaction and that’s why people shop at Christy’s. That positive experience travels via word of mouth. Whether you’re in Cherry Creek, Snowmass, or Deer Valley, you walk into the same personal treatment.