For Stan, watersports have been at the centre of his life since the very beginning. Growing up, Stan’s father owned a surf shop and windsurf school, so Stan grew accustomed to seeing the latest developments of wind sport products and very quickly began to cultivate his own ideas of what good products looked like and how they were made.
Stan developed this interest as a teenager, when he profited from an apprenticeship as an industrial mechanic. Not long after, Stan majored at University in Renewable Energy with a minor in Mechanical Engineering with Composite Materials. The former provided the bedrock for one of SK Shapes’ founding principles; that of producing long-lasting products that are as sustainable as possible. After graduating, the SK brand came into existence, and by 2015 Stan set himself up as entirely self-employed, throwing everything into his own brand vision.
Another foundation stone of SK Shapes derives from Stan’s proudly Swiss roots; the Swiss ethos of beauty and care in production and the entrenched symbiosis of nature with design is reflected in every single SK Shapes product. Nestled between two alpine lakes and surrounded by mountains, it is no surprise that the elegance and beauty of the landscape manifests itself in the brand’s product aesthetics and remains a critical influence in the design process.
This prime Swiss location also provides the opportunity to test products all year round. Despite the bite of the wintry chills, Stan will invariably be found rigging up his latest prototype on one of many Swiss lake home spots to understand the products he develops from their germination as an initial sketch, all the way to the finished working result, ready and waiting to be used by the best kite foil racers in the world.
Over the years, the working partnerships and friendships Stan has developed with leading kitesurfing manufacturers, top-level athletes and extreme snowsport pioneers has enabled SK Shapes to remain a one man band, while profiting from the expertise and feedback of so many men and women from all corners of the industry. From managing product shipping, exports, idea development, finance management, all the way to developing and cultivating an international group of team riders, Stan somehow does it all.
Finally, we beg the question, how does SK stay at the forefront of design, while maintaining integrity as a business which keeps customer satisfaction at the heart of it all? Well, Stan’s insistence to provide a customised service from the first conversation to the final product certainly helps, echoing this in the manufacturing process by maintaining contact with the first link in the supply chain right until the end. This is balanced with the all important R&D side of things, lab tests are all done in-house, while field testing is also managed by Stan and his team riders, not to mention the wealth of ideas and inspiration stemming from a plethora of sporting disciplines practiced by Stan and his team, From the heart of Switzerland, all the way across the globe, SK Shapes bring that Swiss finesse and elegance to the ever growing kite sport industry.