|Industry||Retail - Action Sports|
|Genre||Action sports and outdoor gear|
|Founders||Brothers Nick & Billy Smith|
|Headquarters||Ventura, CA, United States|
Sporting-Sails is an outdoor product company specializing in downhill and downwind innovations for skateboarding, skiing, snowboarding, and surfing. The equipment lines are catered towards skateboarders, mountaineers, skiers, longboarders, snowboarders, surfers, and endurance athletes. The company sponsors professional athletes from the worlds of long distance skateboarding, surfing, skiing, snowboarding, and longboarding (including Adam Colton and Long Treks on Skate Decks).
Spring 2006, Mill Valley, California born brothers Nick and Billy Smith were looking for fireworks and schnapps in the attic of their grandfather's (Bill Smith Jr.) home in Vail, Colorado, when they discovered his "Ski-Klipper" invention from the late 1960s. Nick and Billy Smith tested the drogue parachute/wingsuit flying-like device on skis before attempting to try on a skateboard in the hills surrounding the Marin Headlands and San Francisco, California. On a skateboard, creating drag at will by deploying the Sporting-Sail during the descent enabled Nick and Billy Smith to control their speed and stability on steeper terrain.
Patents & trademarks
April 6, 2010, the patent US US D613,360 S titled "Multi-Purpose Body-Sail with Swallow Tail" was issued by the USPTO to the family inventors of what is now referred to as the "Sporting-Sail," Bill Smith Jr., Billy Smith IV, and Nick Smith.
The trademarked phrase, "Reinvent the Descent" expresses the company's pursuit for inspiration and innovation.
The company is a member of One Percent for the Planet international organization, founded by Yvon Chouinard. At least one percent of sales are donated to non-profit, non-governmental social welfare programs such as Surfrider Foundation and Save the Waves Coalition.
December 2010, Sporting-Sails won grand prize at the Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies' New Venture Seed Competition at the USC Marshall School of Business. Nick Smith, USC Alumni Class of 2011, pitched the Sporting-Sail business concept to top investors in the greater Los Angeles, California area and was awarded $12,500 to fund the idea.
Sporting-Sails has been featured in TIME, The New York Times, LegalZoom, Bear Naked Granola, Patagonia, San Francisco Chronicle, Patch Mill Valley, PSFK, Los Angeles Times, Fox News Los Angeles, Discovery Channel, Mercedes-Benz, Marin Independent Journal, CBS Interactive Business Network, Kairos Society & NYSE, Santa Barbara Independent, Santa Barbara News-Press.
- Wallace, Amy (May 14, 2011). "Innovation Gliding Across Generations". The New York Times.
- "Sporting-Sails: A Downhill Family Tradition". Patagonia (clothing).
- Donnelly, Sean. "The Sporting-Sail: Speed, Wind and Skateboards". TIME Magazine.
- University of Southern California http://stevens.usc.edu/read_release.php?press_id=88}]
- Los Angeles Times | http://articles.latimes.com/2010/dec/27/business/la-fi-smallbiz-students-20101227}]