Camelbak was founded by Michael Edison in Texas in 1989. He invented a hands free drinking system because he felt that something as simple as reaching for bottles during races risked collisions. His timing was auspicious. Marathons, mountain biking and extreme sports created a market in waiting. Then years later Chuck Hunter an avid cyclist so impressed with Edison’s invention quit his job at Lockheed Martin Corp. To join the company that made the backpack-canteen, Camelbak products LLC.
The small firm back then had a devoted clientele of mountain bikers and counterculture types. From here they emerged into a different type of market where their clients ranged from the Government, Military to Industrial businesses. Hence turning the company into a global leader in hydration systems. In 1999 CamelBak launched a military line of products and moved to California’s Sonoma County, here it setup a research center to develop products that could meet the Pentagon’s exciting standards.
Military products have become Camelbak’s dominant business. Feedback from the soldiers has been as important as lab tests in molding products. Camelbak then worked with another company Dupont Co. and a few other companies to develop backpack material, buckles and straps that reduce infrared detection. In 2003, Bear Stearns Co, a New York Investment Banker bought Camelbak for more than $200 million. Camelbak has a lot of challengers in the civilian market, like Jan sport and North face brands.
After branching out from cycling into running, skiing and hiking packs they recently launched products for children, women and hunting that include tapered packs of soft materials and is counting on its brand recognition to brush off competitors. Industrial workers are Camelbaks next target market. It took a lot of conviction, imagination and courage to evolve from an IV bag in a tube sock. Their core values still remain the same and drive everything from inventing the hydration category to becoming the worlds leading maker of hydration solutions.
Camelbaks mission is to reinvent and forever change the way people hydrate and perform, They value unconventional, creative ideas and to find unusual solutions to common problems. They seek new ways to do things and are not afraid to take risks, they are fully dedicated to their creations and are concerned about the way it impacts people’s lives and that is what leads them to passionately make superior products. – A product is everything one receives in an exchange including all tangible and intangible attributes and expected benefits. A product could be a good, service or idea.
Products can be grouped into two general categories : Consumer products and Business products. A product purchased to satisfy personal and family needs is a Consumer product. The key to Business products is their intended use. They are used to manufacture other products, aid the normal operations of an organization and are acquired for resale without change in form. There are seven different types of Business products, they are the following : Major equipment, Accessory equipment, Raw materials, component parts, processed materials and supplies.
CamelBak backpack is an Accessory equipment when it comes to the type of business product it is. Accessory equipment is a standardized equipment used in a firms production, they are usually much less expensive and are purchased routinely with less negotiation. Quality and Service exert important influences on purchases of accessory equipments, prices may significantly affect these decisions. These products are considered capital investments and buyers depriciate their costs over the years.
Marketing of accessory equipments require continous representation and dealing with the widespread geographic dispersion of purchases. A wholesaler also known as Industrial distributors usually plays an important role to cope with these market characteristics, they might be used to contact potential customers in their own geographic areas. Advertising is a very important component in the marketing mix for accessory equipments.