List of ski brands

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This is a list of notable ski equipment companies, past and present. Today the vast majority of skiing brands are owned by a small number of holding companies. Individual brands are abandoned and re-introduced on a year-to-year cycle.

Skis[edit]

The following is a list of companies known primarily for their skis. Most existing companies produce boots and bindings as well.

Name of brand Main products Origins from Established in Notes
4FRNT alpine skis, twin tips United States 2002 At the beginning of the ’00s 4FRNT Founder Matt Sterbenz had grown tired of how bland, sterile, and homogeneous modern skiing was becoming. Sterbenz, along with like-minded disgruntled skiers, took matters into their own hands and formed 4FRNT.
Armada skis alpine skis, twin tips USA 2002 Armada was founded in 2002 by a group of professional skiers and the ski and snowboard photographer Chris O'Connell. Today Armada produces skis, poles, technical outerwear and skiing-related softgoods. They also produce many articles of gear. Purchased by Amer Sports March, 2017.
Atomic alpine skis, ski jumping skis, twin tips, bindings, ski boots, ski clothes Austria 1955 Founded by Alois Rohrmoser. Major alpine brand, purchased by Amer Sports.
Black Diamond Equipment alpine skis, telemark skis, cross-country skis, ski boots, ski bindings USA 1989 Formerly Chouinard Equipment (founded in 1957), Black Diamond first entered the ski market in the early 1980s with the XCD telemark binding. Today Black Diamond designs and manufacturers skis, boots and bindings for alpine, telemark and touring pursuits.
Blizzard alpine skis Austria 1945 Founded by Toni Arnsteiner. Firebird design remains a standard from 1973 into the 1980s. Introduced the "Thermo" with temperature-sensitive materials.
Dynastar alpine skis France 1963 Launched as a joint venture between Dynamic and Starflex skis, acquired by Rossignol in 1967.
Elan alpine skis, ski jumping skis, mogul skis Slovenia 1945 Produced a variety of fiberglass products, including skis, then sailboats and sailplanes. Started winning on the World Cup circuit in 1964 and became famous as the ski of Ingemar Stenmark. Introduced the first widely used carving ski ("parabolic" or "shaped") in 1992, the Elan SCX.
Fischer alpine skis, ski jumping skis, cross-country skis, ski boots Austria 1924 One of the largest brands through the 1960s and into the 80s, and became a force in the downhill racing market with their C4 design in the early 1980s. Today Fischer concentrates on back-country and cross-country skis.
Hart alpine skis, mogul skis United States 1955 Founded in St. Paul, Minn. by Harry and Hart Holmberg and Ed Bjork, to make metal laminate skis. After Head, Hart became the best-selling American-made ski during the 1950s and '60s.
Head alpine skis, ski boots United States 1950 Introduced the Head Standard, the first successful metal/wood composite ski, and took over the majority of the ski market in the US and UK in the 1960s. Was slow to move to fibreglass, and Howard Head left the company in 1969 handing it to AMF. AMF rebuilt the brand in the 1970s and became a force again, purchasing Tyrolia. Taken over in 1989 and currently owned by Head NV, a Dutch company.
K2 alpine skis, twin tip skis, snowboards, mogul skis United States 1962 Founded by Bill and Don Kirschner to make fiberglass skis on Vashon Island, Wash. In 2001 manufacturing was moved to China and the executive offices to Seattle. In 2007, consumer products company, Jarden Corp, bought out K2 and its subsidiaries. Subsequently, purchased by Newell Rubbermaid.
Kneissl alpine skis Austria 1861 Started ski production in 1919 and becomes Kneissl Ski in 1921. Introduced the composite "White Star" in 1960, sparking a revolution in materials. Merged with Dachstein in 1991 and merged Raichle and Dynafit in 1996.
Liberty Skis alpine skis, twin tips, touring skis, freeskis, women's skis, bindings, ski poles United States 2003 Founded by James Satloff and Dan Chalfant, and pioneered the use of bamboo in its full ski line. One of the largest independent ski manufacturers worldwide, with shops and distributors in the US, Canada, Europe, and Asia.
Line Skis alpine skis United States 1995 Introduced a radical-sidecut mini-ski in 1995, and then developed this basic idea into one of the first twin-tip skis in 1999. Purchased by K2 around 2002. Continues to cater to the free ride market.
Madshus cross-country Norway 1906 Only major producer left in Norway. Begins production of fiberglass skis in 1974. Purchased by K2 in 1988. Madshus becomes number two worldwide in Nordic sales in 1997.
Moment Skis alpine skis, twin tips United States 2003 Founded by Casey Hakansson, Moment Skis started after he decided to build a pair of skis for himself. He started building skis for family and friends and eventually turned it into a business.
Olin alpine skis United States 1960s Major player in the 1970s and 80s with their Mark IV. Licensed their line to K2 in 1986 and exited the business, brand re-introduced in 2010 and then abandoned again.
Peltonen cross-country Finland 1945 Founded by Toivo Peltonen (1921–2007). Currently owned by Normark Suomi Oy, a Rapala VMC company. Produces competition level skis with advanced nanocarbon technology at the Heinola ski factory, but also markets cross-country skis for all price classes.
Rønning Treski cross-country skis, alpine Norway 1936 Historic producer of mainly cross-country but also other types of skis such as Telemark, Big Mountain, and Hunter. Started production under the Rønning brand in 1936, and is currently the only producer of wooden skis in Norway. Still produces all skies by hand.
Rossignol alpine skis, ski jumping skis, cross-country skis, twin tips, ski boots, bindings, snowboards France 1907 Introduced one of the first successful all-round fibreglass ski designs. Built a major conglomerate in the 1990s, including Rossignol, Dynastar, Lange, Look, Kerma and other brands. Taken over by Quiksilver in 2005 but lost money and sold only two years later to its CEO, Bruno Cercley. See 100 Years of Rossignol.
Salomon alpine skis, cross-country skis, ski boots, twin tips, bindings, snowboards France 1947 Began as a family-owned shop making saw blades, then ski edges beginning around 1947. Expanded to make bindings (1955), then ski boots (1979) and cross-country ski gear, then golf (1985), the alpine skis (1989). Purchased by Adidas in 1997 and sold to Amer Sports (owner of Atomic, Wilson, Suunto and some other brands) in 2005. See Georges Salomon.
Voile alpine skis, touring skis, telemark bindings United States 1981 Established by Mark Wariakois. Made in Utah.
Voit alpine skis United States 1966 Used a new fibreglass/epoxy technique that was well-liked but very expensive. Exited the industry after only three years.
Volant alpine skis United States 1966–1989 Introduced a stainless steel cap-ski in 1989, but was very expensive to produce and went out of business in 2001. Purchased by Amer Sports in 2003 and the brand abandoned around 2008.
Völkl alpine skis, twin tips, ski clothes Germany 1923 Distributed in the 1960s by Sears in the US. Purchased by K2, and in turn, Jarden in 2007. Subsequently, purchased by Newell Rubbermaid.

Boots[edit]

The following list consists of companies known primarily for their ski boots. Some entries are duplicated from above, but not all. Some, like Head, sell branded boots from other companies and are not listed here.

Name of brand Origins from Established in Notes
Black Diamond Equipment United States 1989 Formerly Chouinard Equipment (founded in 1957), Black Diamond first entered the ski market in the early 1980s with the XCD telemark binding.[1] Today, Black Diamond designs and manufacturers a full line of skis, boots and bindings for alpine, telemark and touring pursuits. Black Diamond Equipment and Scarpa began a partnership in 1987 that ended in 2005.[2]
Hanson United States 1969 Chris and Denny Hanson developed the rear-entry boot while working at Lange, and left to form their own company. Successful during the 1970s, mis-steps during the early 1980s led to their bankruptcy in 1984. Purchased by Daiwa and continues to exist in Japan.
K2 United States 1962 K2 launched its first boot production on Vashon Island in 1975. That effort failed. Purchased Raichle Flexon molds and started Full Tilt around 2006; launched a boot line under the K2 label in 2013. Sold to Jarden Corp. and then to Newell Rubbermaid.
Lange United States 1962 Introduced the first plastic ski boots in 1962, and followed up with a greatly improved model in 1965/66. After 1968, they were a must-have for racers, and rapidly took over the market. Remains a major player to this day, especially in racing.
Nordica Italy 1939 Nordica was formed in Montebelluna, the center of Italian ski boot manufacturing to this day. Entered the plastic ski boot market in 1968, following the lead set by Lange. Nordica pioneered use of the removable, customizable innerboot. Also produces skis and other equipment today. Part of the Tecnica Group.
Rosemount United States 1965 Another contender for title of "first plastic boot", Rosemount was an all-fibreglass shell with a unique side-opening design. Was in the process of introducing a rear-entry model in 1973 when they were purchased by G.H. Bass, then the United States distributor for Raichle. Rosemount ceased production around 1975.
Salomon France 1947 Introduced the famed SX series of rear-entry boots in 1979, and was a major success through the 1980s. When the rear-entry design rapidly fell from favour around 1990, they purchased the San Giorgio factory and turned to traditional front-entry designs. Salomon remains a major boot producer today.
Tecnica Italy 1960 Formed in Montebelluna in 1960 to produce leather work boots, the company introduced the Moon Boot for apres-ski. They followed this with their first ski boots in 1973. Now controls a large number of brands including Nordica, Rollerblade, Dolomite, Lowa, Nitro Snowboards, Think Pink, Blizzard, Moon Boot, and others.

References[edit]