The Line Break: Incase 2015 Bag Collection
Earlier this week, Incase announced it has officially jumped into the Action Camera market with a new collection of bags and accessories designed specifically with the POV camera enthusiast in mind. The move goes hand in in hand with the company’s recent announcement of its SYNDCT Program, which boasts a roster of action sports VIPs like Kelly Slater, SEan Malto, and Ken Block.
We caught up with Incase’s new Director of Marketing Braden Dahl to hear more.
Which particular piece within the collection are you most hyped on and why?
I'll speak for the brand when I say we are all super excited about the Action Camera Collection that drops 8/31. Optimized for the GoPro Hero cameras and accessories, this collection epitomizes extreme organization and protection. As everyday users ourselves, we developed a system of products, featuring TENSAERLITE technology, that create a better experience and enhance the user experience of POV content capture. With the help of pro users Kelly Slater and Ken Block, we have a complete assortment of products that will deliver impeccable quality and innovation. From the Pro Pack that holds everything you could possibly want (including multiple cameras, accessories and tablets) to the Mono and Dual Kits that both organize and protect, to the protective sleeves for both regular and dive cameras, we have the pro user covered.
Tell us a little more about the Tensaerlite Protection Technology and why you feel this sets the bags and sleeves apart from the rest on the market at the moment.
TENSAERLITE Protection Technology is our latest innovation that resulted from the need to evolve our laptop sleeve product line. When we created the first MacBook neoprene sleeve for Apple pre-2000, the goal was to protect the aesthetics of your laptop. But as the consumer, technology and usage has changed dramatically, we decided it was time to elevate protection and in turn developed TENSAERLITE. Designed from the lens of the user experience with a high degree of efficiency and durability in mind, TENSAERLITE is a proprietary material specially formulated for impact protection. The technology brings together all the benefits of both lightweight and shock-absorbing materials, with key ingredients used in premium performance footwear to set a new standard in device protection.
Another interesting part of next season is the Range collection with its reflective detailing. Is this new to the brand’s overall offering for Spring 15, and why is the brand honing in on this particular category?
This particular category is somewhat new to the brand as we have recently, and formally, established key consumer categories that we are now building specific product and messaging for – the active individual being one of them. It's really an organic evolution of our consumers but it has always been part of our DNA, through our SYNDCT ambassadors like Paul Rodriguez or Nigel Sylvester, our retailers and our family here at HQ.
In addition, the core user has expressed the desire of Incase styling, functionality, and innovation in not only their professional needs but also in their active spaces. And that need can be fulfilled with specific distribution points globally with what we feel is a unique point of difference in our products versus the current players. Inspired by the freedom of cycling, the Range Collection, specifically, has really spoken to the outdoor and sports enthusiasts based on its robust materials, reflective details, generous storage, signature device protection, and assortment of sizes and styles.
Is the Icon Collection new for Spring 15?
The Icon Collection formally launched earlier this year (with the Moss Green dropping SP15) and is the derivative of 13 years of evolution. We built the first nylon backpack for the MacBook with our signature design language in 2001 and updated it in 2008 until we re-mastered it and formally introduced the ICON Collection in SP14. With dedicated protection, optimized mobility, intelligent organization and comfort engineering, the ICON is the cornerstone product not only to our bag line but the Incase brand.
Has the bag collection expanded? What is Incase’s strategy when it comes to distribution?
Our bag collection has no doubt expanded aggressively over the last year due to demand from our core consumers as well as retailers and influencers. In order to properly service the growth we have developed a category and segmentation model that will allow for clear focus and efficiencies throughout the process. We have been fortunate to have great partnerships with Apple, Best Buy, and Target, both regionally and globally, that are quickly evolving into new categories, new products, and new consumer targets. With some renewed resources we are servicing them better and becoming more proactive with needs and adjustments.
From there we are developing our specialty business in a big way with a great new sales team that is strongly connected to each of the spaces – both lifestyle and technology – and while we have robust growth plans, sustainability is the key.
What is your take on the overall state of the accessory/bag market at this time – challenges? opportunities?
The accessory/bag market has seen significant growth over the last 5+ years and it continues to grow – representing significant bandwidth in the consumer purchase behavior. Where it goes from here is yet to be defined but there is no doubt that there are many brands taking advantage of this category. The challenges clearly are: dilution, increased competition ,and the ever-lasting struggle of adding footprints/space on the retail floor. With that said, the opportunities we feel are what we want to make them. Technology, innovation, unique styling, and protection are key drivers for sustaining this market and they are some of our strong points, so we feel primed to continue to enter new categories, develop new distribution points globally, and push the boundaries.