The next stop on our Nor-Cali rally was Easton-Bell‘s offices in Scotts Valley, California. With offices and R&D for the company’s Giro, Easton, Bell, and Riddell brands, the designers under the roof are on the cutting edge of helmet, goggle, and equipment design for just about every sport on the planet.
Housing state of the art facilities and labs, the building is home to more than 120 staff members who moved into this space approximately two years ago. The company is actually headquartered in Van Nuys, California, with 32 facilities worldwide, but the Simms Valley location is home to Giro’s snow program, the market leader in helmets and a rapidly growing player in the goggle market.
Giro is the newest member to the Easton-Bell family and was the first maker of lightweight adult cycling helmets, launching in ’85. While it was born on bikes, the technology transferred well to the slopes, allowing Giro to release numerous firsts in the space including the Nine, the first lightweight, ventilated snow sports helmet; and the Fuse, the first lightweight (in-mold construction) helmet with adjustable ventilation system.
The company is hard at work on developing the Holy Grail of helmet technology, a true multi-impact helmet, and according to Giro Snow Senior Brand Manager Bob Scales, they hope to have it up to the standards of numerous international governing bodies in time for next year’s SIA.
While helmets are their bread and butter, Giro is focusing its expansion on goggles and has vastly stepped up the offerings across its line from kids goggles to adults. With lenses made in Varese, Italy at Carl Zeiss, and a solid team of riders, Giro is looking to expand this section and bolster solid add-on sales to its helmet program.
“Goggles are our future,” says Scales.
Here’s a virtual walk through of the offices:
Take a quick tour of the Carl Zeiss factory with Scales: