This new brand of rainwear was launched at the OutDoor show in Friedrichshafen last week by Matthias Cramer, a 55-year-old German industry veteran. Specifically designed for the global sporting goods and specialty outdoor retail circuit, Pro-X Elements is primarily intended to fill a gap in the German-speaking market caused by the shutdown of JeanTex last February and by BasicNet’s decision to focus its K-Way brand of rainwear on the fashion and lifestyle markets.

Cramer has been involved with K-Way since 1991, first as manager of the former German subsidiary of this famous French brand of windbreakers, and then, since 1996, as its licensee for Germany and Austria. The brand has gone through several owners. The present one, which also owns Kappa, Robe di Kappa and Superga, will market K-Way in Germany and Austria starting next January through Klauser, the former fashion agency of La Martina.

Pro-X Elements will use the same factories as K-Way in the Far East. The new line is positioned in the same segment as the former K-Way in terms of pricing and technical features, so it is turning out to be easy to sell it to K-Way’s former customers as well as to those of JeanTex, which was Cramer’s main competitor.

To help him out with this new project, Cramer has recruited a former export manager of JeanTex, Quirin Kammerer, to act as sales manager. Kammerer, who worked recently for Alpina and Lafuma, has already signed agency and distribution contracts for Pro-X Elements with former foreign partners of JeanTex, such as Idaho Sport in France and others in Switzerland, Argentina, etc.

At the same time, Cramer has taken on the distribution of the rugbywear of Canterbury of New Zealand in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, sharing sales of its more fashionable collection with its former German agent. Cramer and his wife are also involved in the golf segment through the distribution of Abacus and Nunu.