• Ariane Maria Malfertheiner
  • International
  • +39 0471 242 625
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SALEWA and Wild Country: the perfect partnership with rock-solid expertise.

The SALEWA Group is the new owner of Wild Country. The link-up looks set for great success given that the mountain sports brand from Bolzano and the Tideswell climbing specialist share more than just a passion for climbing. Like SALEWA, Wild Country is an owner-managed company. And it‘s no coincidence that both companies have situated their headquarters right in the shadows of the mountains, with Wild Country residing in the heart of one of the UK’s best-known rock climbing locations, the Peak District near Manchester, while SALEWA’s HQ is in the Italian Dolomites. Both firms trace their histories way back and are renowned for their innovative product ranges. In addition, they both share an ethos based on a commitment to clean climbing. Through the merge, the mountain sports specialist from South Tyrol  continues to develop its positioning statement and unique selling proposition, spanning the spectrum between focussed product approach and the multi-specialist route.

Wild Country was the brainchild of climbing enthusiasts and it develops high-quality technical rock climbing products. Its product range encompasses gear for all climbing disciplines – trad climbing, sports climbing, bouldering, indoor climbing as well as traditional alpine mountain climbing. With its invention of the ‘Friend’ in the seventies, Wild Country made its name as an innovative pioneer in terms of safety and performance. The inventor of The Friend, Ray Jardine, tested the product on some of the most challenging climbs in Yosemite Valley.  So as not to give the game away before launching the product Ray and his climbing partners simply referred to them as “The Friends”. The name stuck, and ‘Friend’ has since become the global term for the entire product genre. The sales success of Friends has enabled Wild Country to go on to design and develop more and better hardware, in doing so securing the British climbing pros a worldwide reputation as manufacturers of innovative, top-quality climbing products

The merger sends a clear message that the topic of safety at the rock face is becoming an even more central area of focus. “With the merger, we have combined two companies who speak the same language. It marks the realisation of a dream to have this genuine climbing gear brand on board”, confirms Heiner Oberrauch, President of the SALEWA Group. Alongside strengthening the Technical Equipment segment, the SALEWA owner sees the move equally in terms of the opportunity it presents of gaining a stronger foothold in the British and other markets,  rather than an exercise in gleaning increased profit for the overall group.

The Wild Country brand is, with immediate effect, a member of the Salewa Group portfolio alongside the brands Salewa, Dynafit, Silvretta and Pomoca. The English climbing specialist’s products will continue to be marketed under the Wild Country brand name.