Innovation and breaking new ground is Peak Performance´s way of driving sport fashion forward. This approach is not only seen on products and in the design ethos but also reflected in how the company is structured. Jeanette Francke, Creative and Marketing Director, explains the reasoning behind, the strength and special focuses in Peak Performance's design language.
Since last year, Peak Performance is linked to labels like Salomon, Wilson, Atomic and Arc’teryx as part of the company Amer Sports. Will this change the positioning of the brand in the future?
We are a sports fashion brand rooted in ski and the active lifestyle. We use our strong sports heritage, technical knowledge and design identity to take on the activates both on the mountain and in the city. That is what makes us unique. We feel as home designing for the hard conditions on the slopes and trails as in the urban environment. Peak Performance has always been about performance and style and that will never change.
Have there been organizational changes? Are there positive effects regarding synergies?
Synergies and learning’s from other brands are always exiting and them being part of your family makes it even better. I am eager to work closer with the group. Arcteryx is on a great journey – as well as Salomon and I’m sure we will work a lot together in the future.
As of now there are no definite changes but we are of course always fine tuning our processes. The last two years we nailed our Product Development process. By looking into processes in other industries we have set a formula that are ground breaking when it comes to fashion and makes us more effective and agile going forward. We have also merged the design and marketing functions in some processes to make sure we get even closer to the consumer, developing the right products in better speed. Since years we been working close to our athletes, to test and get feedback on the active products and now we added an Advisory Board that gives us opinions on anything from garments, to imagery and marketing material. For a good creative process its key to be open for ideas and thoughts from the outside. Openness will be even more important going forward.
A new organizational setup was launched where design and marketing were integrated under the same leadership. What are the reasons?
To develop the best products in the most impactful way, we saw a need for better integration between the marketing and design teams. By using marketing’s deep understanding of our target group and the market in combination with designs knowledge of product and trends we can secure the right product in the market at a faster speed.
Where do you see the strengths of the Peak Performance FW 19 collection?
All products have a reason for being and that’s sustainable design to us. It’s thought true, it’s tested, hours and hours are spend on trims and details to make the perfect garment with nothing left to chance. And that’s what makes a great collection. When it comes to outerwear we focus on puffers, parkas and liners – and we are great at quilting. Few other brands can do that as good as we. There is one jacket in the X-series, X-10 where we played with the quilt – made the channels bigger and filled it with the best goose down. The jacket is light and at the same time very warm; the jacket you never want to take off once taking it on.
What are the exceptionalities and special focuses in your design language? How do you define the signature Peak Performance style?
It’s about reflecting a sporty aesthetic - racing stripes meet material contrasts and color blocking. The palette for FW19 offers soft pink hues, deep blue, smudge yellow and orange combined with black and white. Exploring contrasts, the collection combines pile textures with glossy surfaces, quilted elements with smooth fabric and shiny nylon with chunky knits. Dare to mix. Dare to test – performance and style, clean and effortless.
How do you manage consonance between technological development, clear design language and sustainability?
It’s a team effort. An effort that starts in the management and runs throughout the organization. From design to production, sourcing, marketing and sales. We all have the same goal – make better products with less impact on the planet. It’s our never ending journey and we work focused and together. That’s the only way forward.
Peak Performance has become part of the Sustainable Fashion Academy for the “Swedish Textile Initiative for Climate Protection”. What can Peak Performance contribute to this environmental initiative?
We are running out of time. We need to act and this network is all about climate action, real results and industry innovation. By being part we are showing that we put the time and efforts needed to create better industry conditions. Not being part wasn’t an option.
Finally, what is your vision for the future?
We are a lifestyle brand. My dream is that we continue developing products that make it easy for people to enjoy what we believe are the best things in life. Being active in the great outdoors or wherever you chose to be. The experiences and the memories. In that sense we are also nurturing dreams!