KOMRAID began life as a question between two great friends - we met at university in England - both keen cyclists, triathletes and general sport nuts. Actually, it was three questions, which went like this: why is so much bike kit designed in dull colours, obsessed with retro styling or plastered with random lettering? Why does everyone seem to wear the same kit? And why is much of it really, really expensive? OK, that's five questions!
Both of us have enjoyed successful careers in digital advertising and pharmaceutical sales and marketing. As you do when you've racked up a few years however, we started to reflect on the corporate lives we've been leading. Whilst fast-paced and potentially financially rewarding, life in large organisations can suppress the urge and energy for innovation and, ultimately, diverge from your own personal values. We found our personal lives increasingly squeezed, reducing time with families and friends. It was also limiting the time we could spend on our bikes, training, racing and talking about kit!
So we decided to be bold, follow our passion and create apparel we really loved. The response to KOMRAID has been, frankly, phenomenal. Since 2017 we have now shipped to thousands of customers in over 50 countries. We have an incredibly low level of product returns, awesome feedback from customers and a large and growing base of repeat business.
Our guiding principles are:
- Be progressive – learn from experience, don't be afraid to break things and be better tomorrow than we were today.
- Be uncompromising – stay true to our values, don't waver.
- Be honest – have an open & authentic relationship with our customers, treat every one of them as we would like to be treated ourselves.
- Lets challenge – use the insight and approaches we have learned in our previous careers, question convention and don't just follow the herd.
- Create a positive legacy – an unspoken code in cycling is that riders always look out for each other - our business tries to mirror this philosophy.
- Have fun - we ride bikes because it's fun and we are fortunate to make cycling our business. If it ain't fun, make it fun!
Our design inspiration comes from a wide range of sources, from surfing to snow sports, adventure racing to IRONMAN. We believe in vibrant styling, carefully-chosen fabrics and a performance fit. All this has to be delivered at a fair price, direct to our customers. We test our kit ourselves over hundreds of kilometres in all conditions, on a variety of bikes and terrain. We ride it, wash it and sometimes even crash it – then develop it based on what we learn and what our customers feed back to us. Before we launch any item, it has to feel great, look awesome and perform outstandingly. Anything less doesn't make the cut.
Over the past 12 months, despite some difficult headwinds from the global pandemic and new import & export conditions as a result of Brexit, we have stayed true to our philosophy of frequent design releases - hey, why should you have to wait until Spring for a new kit choice? We have also expanded our range to include off-road wear, rain and wind jackets, socks (loads of socks), cold weather clothing and even running and gym wear!
Looking forward, as the world returns to a new normality post-pandemic, we are excited to be testing yet more prototypes in the gravel, mountain bike and triathlon disciplines as we look to develop products in new and exciting areas to add colour, panache and quality to even more rides around the world.
We believe that your choice of kit says a lot about you so if, like us, you like to ride your own line, we'd love to have you on board.
Thanks - Jonny and Hamish
KOMRAID. Ride strong and stay safe.