Point 7 Join the PWA
PWA: Andrea, Point-7 has just signed up to become one of the PWA's corporate members. What made you decide you wanted your brand to support the World Tour?
"We believe that for our team riders to have a good platform where they can compete and market themselves and our products on a global stage, that the PWA represents the best platform to achieve this goal; so it was a logical step to support the World Tour.
Windsurfing competition is still a big part of my life, and our aim with Point-7 is to push our current and future riders to climb the PWA rankings and obtain even better results than thus far. The focus of our Pro Team has until now primarily been traveling to national events across the globe and winning to promote the brand, meet with our clients and of course to expand our customer base. This was part of a plan to get in contact with the average windsurfer first and make him aware of our brand before stepping to have riders moving directly onto the PWA top 10. Step by step, we are moving towards the next targets we want to achieve."
PWA: Point-7 is already a big name within the windsurfing industry, but in your own words can you tell us a little bit about the brand, its ethos and direction?
Five years ago I wanted to expand my role in windsurfing besides just racing. I was at a point where I needed a little bit more in my life and I realised that it would be more fun to promote my own brand during races than the brand of someone else; and to have an opportunity to build something for my life after racing. I met with a group of people, specialising in the different areas of business that we needed and started from there. Our idea was to bring something new and modern to the market. I believe we have achieved this, as in a short time our black sails have found distribution in most parts of the world, have achieved great results and have surfed in most waters – in the grips of the global financial crisis our brand has taken off!
PWA: Which riders do you have representing Point-7 on the PWA?
"At the moment our PWA group are all stars and winners in their own respective countries. We have a healthy team of young, motivated riders not only doing the PWA, but many events in their own countries and abroad as well, big and small. Pascal Toselli, Sean O’Brien, Malte Reuscher, Greta Benvenuti as well as myself are all known faces on the PWA slalom tour, Martin ten Hoeve is our PWA wave sailor. In the future our team will surely expand, and we will as previously, give priority to younger riders who show motivation and dedication – as we strongly believe our sport needs a younger image. We push our riders to work as a team during the events as we have some future plans to create some services that will allow a bit more reassurance to our riders taking part on the PWA; something that is missing on the tour between the individual riders sponsored by the same brands."
PWA: Do you think it's important that the windsurfing industry stands behind world class windsurfing?
"Yes, but maybe it would be more beneficial if a solid TV partnership could be established to bring the sport into the general media and not rely so heavily on the windsurfing industry stand behind it solely. If outside sponsors could be found it would be a strong boost to the sport. But for that stronger and wider coverage is needed from the events."
PWA: We're always keen for a bit of gratuitous plugging of our sponsors. In your words, why should potential customers choose Point-7?
"To make it short... our distribution network is working ONLINE, which allows create the best quality products at the best possible price. We do not need to save money on our production to be price-competitive on the market. This fact is apparent with the fact that we do not use any transparent monofilm on our sails, which would have been the cheap option, but that we prefer to use more costly UV-ray resistant materials. We have a unique customer-care service which answer questions within 24 hours giving great advice to anyone wishing to purchase a new sail or any of our products. Clients contacting us can feel confident with the guidance they receive when choosing their sails, then to have it delivered directly at their door in only a matter days.
As owner of the company, I chose not to sit in the office the entire day in a non-windsurfing environment, but to spend time on the beach with my clients and friends, living the windsurfing lifestyle and racing with my team on the tour, which in turn helps me to better understand their needs. This way, our products always have the real feedback and we can build them how ‘real’ windsurfers want them. We have a fantastic network of partners and suppliers developing new products with us non-stop; and I believe we have one of the best structures in place to introduce new innovating products to the market."
PWA: From someone very much at the heart of the industry, can you give us a heads up on any potential developments or concepts we might see making their way into production in the near future?
"We have worked on the ‘Omega’ boom recently. This is a product that took a lot of energy and development and has just recently entered production. Aside from the Omega, we’ve just completed a whole new range of products we had previously not produced; booms, accessories, bags and more. Over winter we designed special custom sails for Winter Ice Surfing and these will enter full production next winter.
So we keep having new ideas and working on new concepts; our focus is on REAL improvements, not marketing gimmicks."
You can check out the whole point-7 range @ www.point-7.com