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ONCE UPON A TIME...
… back in 1986, two very passionate skiers, one of them a world-class mogul skier with several World Cup wins, were sitting next to each other in a chairlift heading up a mountain. About to test and write about a new skiwear line, they started to talk about why no one was making skiwear that they wanted to wear. Garments that combined excellent functionality with simple, attractive design. Also, they wondered if there was any way that they could stay longer and more often in the ski resort they both loved - the little mountain village Åre, in northern Sweden.
It turned out that the answer to both questions was Peak Performance. Initially, their ambitions didn’t extend much beyond making some clothes for themselves and their friends, in sufficient quantities to make a living from it. The business was shaped by what was important to them. Finding the right design and technical solution was paramount.
And the strategy worked. In the late 1980’s, people were tired of extravagance and superficiality. Everybody was looking for the real thing that comes with genuine quality. Ski jackets with leather details and flannel shirts were suddenly the answer, rather than neon and looking like a fully decorated Christmas tree. Orders generated by the first mail order catalog overwhelmed the little post office in town. So much so that they had to take on more staff just to keep up.
During the early years, most things took longer to do than they should have. After all, Peak Performance was a company founded by skiers – people who more than anything else wanted to ski come winter. Anyone who managed to find our little office in Åre was often confronted with a sign on the front door that read: Gone skiing.
ÅRE AND THE MOUNTAIN HOUSE
Our hometown Åre, in northern Sweden, has hosted the Alpine World Championship three times but is probably more known for tree-lined skiing, easy access to vast off-piste terrain, Scandinavian nature, and notoriously extreme weather. The saying goes “if it can handle Åre, it can handle anything” more or less.
Straight up the mountain from Åre’s central square and our store, you can spot the Peak Performance Mountain House. One of our favorite places to hang out, go skiing, test products and stay close to home.
THE REPAIR SHOP
On the second floor of our store in Åre you’ll find Åre Syverkstad (Repair Shop), headed up by Marie. She’s repaired Peak Performance garments since 1996 and knows more about our products than anyone. Her specialty is anything Gore-Tex.
In an old warehouse in one of Stockholm’s many ports, you’ll find our head office. This is where everything at Peak Performance is created by a very dedicated crew. Design, Sourcing, Marketing, the Sustainability Team, and all the other important functions that make up the brand all sit together here.
Besides everyone’s favorite area, the fireplace on the second floor, you’ll find a range of gear all over the office. Skis, both downhill and cross country, various bikes depending on the type of commute, and the occasional kayak and board considering we’re located right in the harbor. Never a dull moment at Peak Performance HQ.
CEO SARA MOLNAR
Say hello to our CEO/awesome skier Sara Molnar. This is her, on the left, next to our Friend and Freeride World Tour winner, Elisabeth Gerritzen, after an amazing run down Bec de Rosses. It doesn’t hurt knowing a thing or two about skiing when you’re heading up a company like Peak Performance. Sara’s latest award - “Businesswoman of the Year” within the Swedish Sports industry.