At the OutDoor show, Christian Jäggi, the head of Black Diamond’s European operations explained to this publication how the European business is going to be set up after the brand merged with Gregory Mountain Products. Black Diamond is looking for a European brand manager for Gregory who will report to Jäggi as well as to the Gregory operations in the U.S., but while the backpacks brand will remain completely independent in the market, keeping its own sales and marketing team, back-office functions will be shared.
All the back office is going to be bundled at BD’s Swiss headquarters, where invoicing and customer service will be centralized. Contrary to earlier reporting, the two brands’ warehouses will be merged in Weil am Rhein at the Swiss-German border, where all shipments of Black Diamond products are already handled.
As far as the distribution in the various countries is concerned, Jäggi said that he sees no reason to change people in the markets where a good sales force is in place. He hinted, however, that distributors might be transformed into agents. This might be the case for Invia, the German distributor, which has sold Gregory along with Mountain Equipment and other premium brands for many years. No changes of this kind are planned before the end of July.