Chuckbuddies, the brainchild of industry vet Rasmus Ostergaard, is launching its new line of shred-inspired toys at SIA this week with a line-up featuring of pro models from Terje to Torstein, and Jamie Lynn to Scotty Lago. We caught up with Ostergaard, the former CEO of Europe’s Method Magazine to learn more about crossing the pond with their rad new toys.
Looks like you're taking Chuckbuddies global – you've been working on this for a few years now – tell us a little about your little buddies.
Yeah, we are on a mission to spread fun and creativity and hopefully help grow participation in snowboarding and action sports in general around the world. After two years of great growth in Europe and a lot of development, we are pretty excited to show our new collection of toys and lifestyle products for the Action Sports Market. Here at Chuckbuddies our roots run deep in the world of snowboarding and we are very proud to introduce a collection of some of the best riders in the world from the past to the present.
From Terry Kidwell to Torstein Horgmo, our goal is to tell a story and educate the youth and give older riders some memories. We introduce you to a new way of interacting with your target audience through play and creativity. As evidenced in our videos and the many user generated videos that can be found online our toys really work. We call them action sports toys with a function. Or as Terje Haakonsen puts it: Chuck Rips!
Chuckbuddies started out as a Snowboard toy and from popular demand we are introducing a skier and a skateboarder for Fall 2012. Also a series of ramps and other cool products to push the brand.
Get them young. Keep them young. Bring them fun. Chuck it!
Can I get a real face tattoo at your booth? Does it have to be of a Chuckbuddie? That would be rad guerilla marketing…
You have to come check it out, and if you want it to be permanent, I’m sure we can sort it out for you!
How have sales been in Europe and who's been moving them?
Sales are really good, we are growing like crazy and we are only in the beginning of our journey, we have a good mix of customers from core shops, resort shops, sports shops, and the likes. Everyone seems to love the product and the smart retailers use the toys to bring people in through creative window displays and running in store Chuckbuddies contests.
How do retailers merchandise them? Is it an on counter set up with a couple out for kids to play with and try and steal?
Depends on the store, we support a lot of our retailers with LCD screens and DVD’s and that's really what helps boots sales. As soon as consumers see the videos and how the product actually works they get hooked.
What are you doing for marketing and where?
We do Demo’s at events, we are launching pro models for Fall 2012 with some of the best riders in the world like Terje Haakonsen, Jamie Lynn, Scotty Lago, Eero Ettala, Chas Guldemond, and Torstein Horgmo to name a few. We got online video contests and so many more things in the pipeline that I can’t reveal yet. We support events like the World Rookiefest Tour that is global series for upcoming riders. And in fall 2012 we are launching a smart phone and online game.
Do you have any accounts in the US or plans for distributors over here?
Dude where do you get your market intelligence from? We’ve been in shops since before Christmas…I think we are in about 100 shops right now. We are just getting started so I don’t blame you;-) We have made a distribution agreement with Flow Sports for North America, they actually launched in US in December and the reactions from retailers have been really good. Everyone loves the Chuckbuddies. It’s a great new product group and it’s a toy that actually works and brings a new way for retailers to interact with consumers and engagement is a keyword in everything we do.
What's your sickest Chuckbuddie trick?
I think we haven’t seen the sickest yet, but you should go search on YouTube for some crazy videos.
How much do they sell for retail/wholesale?
They retail at $30, and there’s stock in US now so hit us up for at once orders. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 949.361.5260 and ask for Chuck.
Any plans on expanding the line? Maybe a softer Huckbuddie? A blow up Fuckbuddie? Just a thought.
Funny you ask, we have actually made a line of Plush Chuckbuddies I guess you could call them Huckbuddies. Last week I tried to register the fuckbuddies.xxx but it was already registered by your publisher…I should maybe ask you what TransWorld has got cooking. Drop by the booth and get a taste for all our new products like the Skateboarder Chuckbuddies and our lifestyle products.
Anything else you'd like to add?
I really want to thank all our team riders that and believe in what we are doing and we just wanna bring some fun into the retail and help grow the snowboard participation globally.