IN THE KNOW with Adam Cook of Layback Co
Layback Co, a BC hammock company founded in 2015 by friends Adam Cook and Justin Chorney is named after a classic old-school skate trick and the friend’s laidback approach to life. After a successful appearance on Dragons Den which saw all of the Dragons vying for their business the brand really kicked into gear but production issues hampered their success. Now with new business and creative partners involved and production issues sorted, Layback Co is back with some exciting new collaborations and ready to get back to it! We sat down with Adam Cook to catch up and find out more!
Hey Adam, how have you been!?
I’m good! Considering how crazy things have been over the past year and a half.
That’s good! How have the last 18 months or so been with you and the Layback crew? You guys recently had some interesting ownership changes, didn’t you?
Things have been crazy. The beginning of Covid was very tough for us, especially coming off a previous season involving a production nightmare. Lucky for us because of social distancing, hammock sales have been on the rise. We were able to pick up a few major retail partners because of it including REI, Nordstrom’s and Zumiez.
Yes, we took on a new investor last summer. It came at a perfect time for the Layback family. He is a very accomplished businessman with 35yrs of international business under his belt. The WKNDRS Claire & Rachel are officially part of the Layback family as well owning a piece of the brand.
Excellent, that’s great and love the WKNDRS girls! Any exciting projects or collaborations in the pipeline?
We’re currently getting ready for an exciting S/S 22 season. We will be launching a new sku into our Layback line which is super cool. We do have some fun collabs for next season including Spencer Hamilton, Sascha Daley, Lizard King, Mark Appleyard that we’ll be showcasing at January's KNOWSHOW. We also had a rad collab with Slowtide. We have some other fun brands we’ll be working with. Everyone will have to wait and see who they are haha.
Cant wait! Going back a bit, you guys were on Dragons Den weren’t you? How was the process to get on the show and what was that overall experience like?
Yeah, Dragons Den was a crazy experience I personally had never planned to be on the show. My partner at the time Justin noticed they were doing live auditions in Vancouver while he was out for lunch. I was in New York at the time and he called me to tell me he auditioned and I didn’t think anything of it. Months later we were actually packing up our booth at the summer KNOWSHOW and received a call to say congratulations you’re going to be on Dragons Den. Then things became real! haha Then we flew to Toronto to film. I was so nervous it was insane. We pulled it together and had an awesome audition! They all loved the brand. We did a deal with three Dragons. Unfortunately, we had major production issues the following season and the deal was put on hold. The show was great for our brand awareness.
Many brands saw an uptick in business the last 18 months, many have had production and other challenges, how has the pandemic affected your business and what changes if any have you had to make to adapt?
We have definitely seen an uptick in business. Our biggest problem was we had more demand than product. Because of the logistic nightmare going on it wasn't even an option to ship more products from overseas. Our product was definitely late this season. Moving forward we’re looking to move our production south of us. That way we’ll be able to avoid overseas logistic issues.
What’s next for Layback?
We plan on expanding our line. We’ll also be focusing on building new great relationships globally.
How are you currently servicing your accounts?
We’re currently servicing our accounts with our rep team. Also, a lot of Zoom, and Microsoft teams meeting haha
What are you most looking forward to about a return to in-person buying and tradeshow season?
I love people! I’m so excited to network with everybody face to face. Social beers are when all the deals happen haha
Great chatting Adam, we’re looking forward to seeing you again and having you back at KNOWSHOW in January!
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