John shows off the Brubeck Men’s Athletic Short Sleeve Top
If you’re frustrated with what’s on offer from Australian outdoor gear and activewear retailers, you’re not alone.
Globewalker’s focus isn’t so much on the elite outdoor adventurer, as it is for the everyday person who wants to (or already does) get outside and do extraordinary things in the great outdoors.
If you’re a gym going outdoor junky, their activewear range will suit you perfectly. For the more hardcore adventurer who needs sleeping bags for the most extreme conditions, they also offer just the products you need. They sell three brands – Brubeck, Malachowski and Cumulus – all of which are sourced from Poland and have been hand-selected for their superior quality. They’re planning to add more products down the track.
This blogging gig is hard work, but you meet some amazing people in the process. John Feeney is one of those people for me. If I had more time on my hands I have no doubt that John and I would have shared a hike and a beer (or a bunch of hikes and beers) by now. He’s a good egg.
I had a few words with John about Globewalker, his reasons for buying the business, and his future plans. Read on to see what he had to say.
So, you and your brother have just bought Globewalker, an outdoor and activewear apparel and gear company. What would you say led you both to this point in your life?
Well, as you know, I’ve been a keen hiker and camper for a while now. I’ve used plenty of gear that works and plenty that hasn’t, which led me to the idea of potentially creating my own brand at some point as I felt there was a big opportunity for a quality product to cut through the noise.
Once I started blogging consistently on The Hiking Society, I got in touch with the former Globewalker owner and asked if she’d be interested in a collaboration. She agreed but I didn’t hear from her again for a few weeks. I followed up and found out she wanted to sell the business and asked if I was interested. I said I would think about it.
My older brother has his own business and is very much an entrepreneur so naturally, I spoke to him about what was potentially on offer. We eventually bought the business on December 1, 2016.
How do you see Globewalker as different from other outdoor gear retailers? What’s the advantage of shopping with Globewalker over other more well-known brands?
The quality and performance of the apparel and gear of the brands we stock – Brubeck, Malachowski and Cumulus. It’s all sourced from Europe and is designed for extreme conditions such as the Himalayas and Nepal, but also ‘cooler’ conditions such as New Zealand and Tasmania. The look and feel of the products is like nothing I’ve ever seen before in the Australian market. Even the packaging of the product is high quality. We are confident that our range of products can offer a great alternative to what already exists in the market today.
Who do you consider your target market?
Hikers, campers, mountaineers, runners, cyclists, and even people who frequent the gym… Our Brubeck range of active wear really caters for a number of outdoor and fitness pursuits, whilst our Cumulus and Malachowski range caters for campers, hikers and mountaineers. We believe we have something for everyone and it’s only going to grow.
I’m always interested in the ethics and the manufacturing process of the gear I buy. Globewalker stocks some gear brands that I’ve never heard of, so what can you tell me about that side of things?
As mentioned previously, our gear is sourced from Europe and therefore the brands we stock are bound by fairly strict manufacturing standards, as laid down by the EU. For instance, the down in the Malachowski sleeping bags is goose down and is obtained and manufactured in accordance with respect for the rights of animals.
What are your plans for the future of Globewalker? How do you plan to continue serving your customer’s needs in the current changing marketplace?
Our plan is to make Globewalker a recognised brand within Australia and New Zealand. Our existing brands are largely unknown but the feedback we have received so far has been nothing but extremely positive.
One customer went as far as saying our company is ‘the best-kept secret in the outdoor gear world’.
That, in itself, is encouraging. With the right marketing, we’re confident we can increase that existing exposure and brand awareness of the company 10-fold.
What do you hope people take away from their experience with Globewalker?
That they’ve received a high level of customer service in addition to a quality product. We strongly believe in our products but our customer’s experience with us is priority number 1, 2, 3, 4, and so on.
We have no issues going above and beyond to ensure our customers get to experience that level of customer service.
John, I wish you guys all the best with this exciting pursuit. I salute you for taking on adventure as a mantra, not just in the outdoors but in making a living. You inspire me.
Got anything to say about Globewalker or Australian outdoor retailers in general? If you have any stories, updates or corrections, please let us know by commenting below.