Good luck finding your favorite Liquidlogic kayak on the shelves of your friendly local kayak shop, or any dealer for that matter. Just months after Fluid announced a similar move, Legacy Paddlesports sent a notice to its retail partners that whitewater brand Liquidlogic will become a direct-to-consumer brand…
The direct-to-consumer move will take place beginning October 1, 2014.
“While this has not been an easy decision, we, along with our investment partners feel that having a direct message to the end consumer will allow for future growth not only for us but for the sport of whitewater kayaking,” executives say.
In its letter to retailers, Legacy states that, “In the past five years we have experienced a reduction in the number of retailers (US) participating in the sport, along with a massive growth of manufacturers all battling for floor space, marketing dollars and sales. With a direct to consumer distribution plan we hope to invigorate the sport and provide the kayaking community with a vast array of kayak designs to fit their particular interest.”
Recently moving into Legacy’s new manufacturing facility, Liquidlogic has long been a whitewater brand favored by many, especially core boaters pushing the envelope.
“The hard part of this transition,” the announcement continues, “is the move away from you, our retailers, who have been at the core of the business from the beginning, and with whom we have formed many strong relationships.”
“Changing the way we sell kayaks has been the hardest decision I’ve been part of since joining the industry,” says company co-founder Shane Benedict. “Our dealer partners have been a huge part of our success as we developed Liquidlogic, but this move is what we feel is right for the company as a part of the sport of whitewater kayaking, and as a responsible employer.”
Legacy will continue providing Native Watercraft’s line of fishing kayaks through current channels of distribution and has no intention of changing its existing sales model.
“Kayak fishing is a rapidly growing sport with an established yet expanding dealer base,” says Benedict. “We will continue developing the brand to provide functional, profitable and innovative boats that excite your customers.”