We, Pernilla and Niclas Nyrensten, love nature and traveling! Pernilla has climbed several high mountains, been to Everest Base Camp and backpacked around the globe. Niclas loves adventure and action-filled activities like mountainbiking, snowboarding, climbing, hiking and traveling across the world. Together we decided to start an outdoor brand in 2014.
Long before we started RevolutionRace we met a girl at a trade show who said she’d rather use her old jeans when picking blueberries than soiling her expensive outdoor pants. That was the first time we realized the outdoor industry had a problem. We’d often felt the same way while backpacking and traveling around the world. Not only were the established outdoor brands too expensive, but their pants fit poorly and seemed to be designed for men only. And the colors? Fifty shades of boooring.
The market was missing a brand that made fun, high-quality clothes at a reasonable price, and we kept thinking that somebody should do something about it. During a hike to Everest Base Camp, the idea for RevolutionRace was born. The “somebody” we had been searching for ended up being us.
In the beginning, we ran the business out of Pernilla’s father’s garage, which he graciously let us turn into a warehouse and logistics hub. We were heads of product development, purchasing, finance, marketing, customer service and distribution all at once – we even wrote the addresses on each package by hand. We shot all the product photos in our living room and modeled the clothes ourselves. We did everything ourselves.
When we first started out we had much to learn. The fit was no good, the threads were too weak, and the workmanship was far from perfect. Twelve samples and a lot of headaches later we had a great looking first product – our original Nordwand pants! But when we visited our manufacturer in Vietnam, we realized that the pants hadn’t been made to our detailed specifications. The plant manager watched in horror while Niclas tore up twelve pairs of pants on the spot. The factory worked with several large brands and at the time, we were their smallest (but likely the most demanding) customer. We had a long emergency meeting and in the end they reluctantly ended up replacing the entire collection. Today we’re one of their biggest customers and we often laugh at the story. They’ll never choose the wrong thread for a RevolutionRace product again!
Once our production was up and running, we shot our first product video with no script, a cell phone camera and highly questionable lighting skills. After we posted it in our social media channels, our ads manager at Facebook called and told us to take it down because she was sure it would bomb. Three days later she called us back and apologized. At that point, the video had gone viral, with over a million views. People loved the genuine feel of the film. We still make our own films for social media but today we’re often assisted by our super skilled customers who help us make their own videos for us. We’re building the brand together with our customers. We often ask our customers what they want us to make next year, we read all the feedback on social media and we read all reviews. Together with our community we decide what our products will look like and which products to include – simple as that!
Today RevolutionRace is established in 30 countries and counting. We’ve sold over one million pants worldwide and received reviews in our web shop. We’ve outgrown the garage and moved into an office big enough to keep our 55 employees happy on a daily basis. Other things haven’t changed. The same factory in Vietnam sews our pants, but today we’re one of their best customers and good friends with the owner. We still make our own videos, with only marginally better lighting. That’s how you know that we spend our money on the important stuff, like developing better products for our customers.
We’re passionate about nature (read more about our sustainability policy here) and our ultimate goal is to have people go outside and play. Whether you like hiking, climbing, skiing, camping, traveling, walking the dog, picking blueberries or all of the above, we have a product that will get you there. You’re never too old to have fun in nature!
Nature is our playground.
Niclas and Pernilla Nyrensten